Families needing guardians or working with guardians will have additional resources thanks to two bills signed into law Monday by Gov. Jay Inslee.
Senate Bill 5607, sponsored by Sen. Steve Conway, D-South Tacoma, improves the complaint procedure for legal guardianship of a vulnerable adult. The bill improves protections for incapacitated adults by allowing people to petition the court to modify the authority of a court-appointed guardian. Until now, there hasn’t been a procedure in statute to appeal guardian decisions.
Senate Bill 5647, also sponsored by Conway, allows courts to develop a guardianship courthouse facilitator program. The bill is designed to assist families with establishing guardianship.
“An issue that deeply concerns me is when a guardian makes a decision to isolate a parent from the family,” said Conway. “We need a place for families to go to challenge decisions that they believe are not in the best interest of their loved ones. I am confident that SB 5607 provides a necessary avenue to review a guardian’s decisions.
“Our population, specifically the baby boomer generation, is growing older. It is important that we continue to refine and perfect our guardianship programs now so that we can care for our most vulnerable elderly citizens in the future.”