Adult Guardianship & Trusteeship

A court-appointed guardian makes personal decisions for an adult who lacks the capacity to do so. Guardians make decisions with respect to where the adult resides, the adult’s health care, the adult’s education, the people with whom the adult associates, and legal matters related to the adult.

A court-appointed trustee makes financial decisions for an adult who lacks the capacity to do so. A trustee can have legal authority to handle all financial matters related to the adult. Trustees pay bills, sell assets including real estate, receive income and benefits, and deal with financial institutions and the CRA, all on behalf of the adult.

Under what circumstances will a guardian or trustee be appointed for an adult?

  • When an adult is incapable of making decisions due to an illness, a traumatic injury, aging and dementia, or other mental health issues

  • When a person who is incapable of making decisions due to a developmental disability or disabilities turns 18

Under what circumstances might a guardian or trustee not be appointed for an adult in the situations above?

  • If an adult has a valid personal directive, they may not need a guardian

  • If an adult has a valid enduring power of attorney, they may not need a trustee

Who determines if an adult needs a guardian or trustee?

Before any court application is made, an adult’s capacity will be assessed by a qualified assessor. In most cases, this will be the adult’s physician or psychologist. The assessor will complete a Capacity Assessment Report detailing the nature of the adult’s capacity to make decisions both personally and financially.

See attached a copy of a blank Capacity Assessment Report (FORM 4) for guardianship and trusteeship applications:

CAR Form 4

Bruni Law services include:

  • Applications to appoint a new guardian or trustee

  • Applications to review a current guardian and trustee order

  • Applications for the examination and approval of trusteeship accounts

  • Applications to discharge a guardian or trustee

  • Urgent applications to appoint a guardian or trustee

  • Applications to appoint a trustee for a limited purpose where the adult may have an interest in a third party estate

Our fees will vary based on the nature, complexity, and urgency of the application and based on the adult’s assets.

In certain circumstances, our firm will accept hardship cases where all or a portion of our fees are paid by the government.

Please contact our office for more information and a detailed quote.