At age 18 (known as the Age of Majority), legal rights previously given to parents or guardians transfer to the person. These include the right to: consent to medical treatment, determine living arrangements, sign contracts, and make financial and educational decisions. Sometimes a person with significant disabilities may be unable to govern themselves or manage their affairs. The legal process, known as Guardianship, allows the courts to determine “incapacitation” of the person and appoint a Guardian who will be responsible for making all or some of the life decisions for the person.
DS&A Support Coordinators can provide families with information on three different Guardianship avenues: 1) The Bureau of Guardianship Services, 2) The Community Health Law Project, and 3) Pro-Se Guardianship. Our Support Coordinators may also make referrals to state guardianship services when a consumer's circle of supports are concerned about their ability to make their own decisions, but the consumer lacks family support required to explore other options.