Guardianship

Guardianship proceedings can be initiated for many reasons. When a loved one is unable to perform daily activities due to an accident or illness, it may become necessary for a court-appointed guardian to oversee their financial affairs and medical treatment. In Manhattan, the most densely populated and prosperous borough of New York City's five boroughs, this can be a particularly complicated process requiring a lawyer with specialized experience dealing with Guardianship law in Manhattan. The particularities of Guardianship law can differ from Manhattan to Brooklyn, or Manhattan to Queens, or Manhattan to Staten Island or the Bronx.

According to the New York Census Bureau, Manhattan's elderly population is projected to increase 57.9% by the year 2030. That's the highest per capita increase in an elderly population out of all of New York. This makes Guardianship Law a growing and pressing concern for residents of Manhattan, that will continue into the future. Additionally, of Manhattan residents between the ages of 16 and 64, 9.6% are registered with the ACS census as living with a disability. As persons can be become incapacitated at any age, Guardianship Law becomes a vital part of people's lives suddenly, and without warning.

Article 81 of New York's Mental Hygiene Law provides Manhattan's legal guidelines for a court to appoint a guardian in situations where an individual can no longer manage their financial or personal needs due to incapacity. Disputes that require an experienced lawyer can arise when family or friends, or the incapacitated person themselves, contest the need for a Guardian, the scope of a Guardian's power, or the individual chosen to serve in that capacity. There are cases where an emergency guardianship can be instituted temporarily, when the incapacitated person is being victimized, or the court requires additional time to make a permanent decision. Article 81 describes the criteria by which a Manhattan court will decide the appointment of a guardian as well as the powers that will be granted to a guardian in their assistance of the incapacitated person.

The determination of need for guardianship involves first, a Manhattan court­ mandated evaluation of activities of daily living. This is an observation account of the ability of the activities of the allegedly incapacitated person to perform daily tasks including feeding oneself, bathing oneself, grooming and dressing on one's own, the ability to work, keep a clean house, and manage their time. A person's ability to perform these tasks reasonably without assistance is a primary concern in Manhattan guardianship cases, determining as well whether a person should be expected to competently conduct their financial and health affairs.

In short, Guardianship proceedings in Manhattan can be a complicated and litigious affair. As an experienced New York Guardianship lawyer in Manhattan, I'm familiar with these situations and work closely with clients to promote their interests as well as the interests of the individual alleged to be incapacitated. I have represented many clients in Mental Hygiene Law Article 81 guardianship proceedings throughout the New York Courts. I have also been appointed by the Court as a Court Evaluator who investigates the underlying facts in a guardianship matter, providing the Court with a report and recommendations for the Court's consideration.

I graduated in the top 10% of my class at The New England School of Law in Boston and served on the prestigious "Law Review," I have also served on the staff of a NYC Councilperson and NYS Assemblyman.