What is a Legal Guardian?

What Are the Minimum Statutory Requirements to be a Guardian in Illinois?

Updated on:
October 19, 2018

What is needed to become a guardian in Illinois?  In this article, we will explain the minimum requirements of being a guardian in Illinois and what factors can influence a guardianship in Illinois.  

What is a Legal Guardian?

A legal guardian is someone who is legally declared as responsible for another person.  Often, guardians are thought of as being used primarily for guardianship over minor children whose parents are unfit or unable to take care of the child. This is one major situation where legal guardians are involved, but they are also often used for developmentally disabled adults who need extra assistance as well as senior citizens who are incapacitated.  A legal guardian is often responsible for much of the legal responsibilities of the person such as giving them a place to live, protection, and food/clothing.  

For more on this, check out our article: What is a Court Appointed Guardian?


What is Required to be a Legal Guardian?

The bare minimum requirements for a person to be declared a guardian are relatively simple.  The potential guardian must:


  • Be at least 18 years old.

  • Live within the United States.

  • Be of “sound mind.”

  • Not be disabled or incapacitated.

  • Not be a felon or pose a threat to the person.

What Factors can Influence Guardianship?

There are also other factors to consider when deciding on a guardian.  Some important aspects that will be considered when appointing a legal guardian are:

  • Can the potential guardian afford to take care of another person?

  • Does the potential guardian have the time to commit to a guardianship?

  • Is the potential guardian physically fit enough to take on the responsibilities of guardianship?
  • Does the guardian have a pre-established relationship with the person? The level of familiarity between the guardian and the person they are looking to have a guardianship over can significantly impact the success of the guardianship.


Guardianship laws can be unique depending on the state, so if you are looking to establish guardianship, it is highly recommended that you reach out to an attorney beforehand.  If you are located in the state of Illinois, we have several locations across Chicagoland and would be happy to help you with your guardianship or other family law case.  You can call us here at 630-324-6666 or email us at info@oflaherty-law.com.


Presented By O'Flaherty Law

O'Flaherty Law is happy to meet with you by phone or at our offices in Downers Grove, Elmhurst, Naperville, St. Charles, Lake in the Hills and Tinley Park, Illinois.

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Guardianships of Minor Children

What Are the Minimum Statutory Requirements to be a Guardian in Illinois?
Disclaimer: Our articles and comment responses do not constitute legal advice and are not intended to create an attorney-client relationship.

Please contact us to schedule a free consultation for legal advice specific to your situation.

What Factors can Influence Guardianship?How to decide on a guardianWhat is needed to become a guardian in Illinois?Can parents choose their child's guardian in Illinois?how to pick a guardian for your childHow do you pick legal guardianship of a child?

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