When a person is incapacitated or disabled, one or more guardians may be appointed to make various types of decisions for them. A guardian may be appointed for a minor child, a senior adult or a disabled or incapacitated person of any age.
Parents are the natural guardians of their minor children.
A guardian is supposed to serve the ward’s best interests – and/or do what the ward would have wanted if competent to decide.
But which course is correct in any particular situation?
Although the article tends to concentrate on guardians for seniors, there are many guardians for minors.
The ultimate answer to the question may depend on the age and status of the ward.
For example, while a senior adult may be permitted to make certain choices, even bad and unhealthy ones, the same may not be authorized in the case of a minor child.
Parallels to the authorization of dual competing standards may be found in other areas of the law concerning minors and the disabled, incapacitated or incompetent.