Getting your affairs in order – what is an appointment of Enduring Guardian?

An Enduring Guardian is the person you appoint to make personal, health or lifestyle decisions on your behalf should you lose the capacity to make them for yourself.

When you appoint an Enduring Guardian, you choose the decision-making powers your Enduring Guardian will have. For example, you can authorise your Enduring Guardian to decide where you may live or what medical treatment you receive. An Enduring Guardian cannot make decisions about your money or assets.

You should choose someone with the skills to make good decisions for you and who would best understand your values and wishes.

In NSW, Enduring Guardians are appointed in writing using a prescribed form of appointment. More than one Enduring Guardian may be appointed, and each Guardian can be appointed with different roles.

The person(s) you appoint as your Enduring Guardian(s) must accept their appointment(s) by signing the form which shows that they have agreed to be your Guardian. All signatures on the form of appointment must be witnessed by an eligible witness, who must be an Australian legal practitioner, Registrar of the Local Court, or an approved officer from NSW Trustee & Guardian.

Enduring Guardianship Appointments made in all Australian States and Territories are automatically recognised in NSW.

You may revoke your appointment and allocate another appointment at anytime, provided you have mental capacity to do so.

Enduring Guardianship will end when the appointed person dies, or if revoked by the appointee (so long as they have capacity to do so), or by the Guardianship Division of NCAT or the Supreme Court, or by marriage, unless you marry the appointee. Further a joint Enduring Guardianship appointment will end if one party dies, becomes incapacitated or resigns, unless it has been clearly stated on the form of appointment that you would like it to proceed beyond these events.

………………………………………………………………….…………………………………

Source: Written by Peter McNamara, Partner at Clark McNamara Lawyers, Sydney

top