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Should Felons Be Guardians?

MP900442275Many states are grappling with their guardianship statutes, so that they can do a better job of preventing elder abuse. One question that has come up in Pennsylvania, is whether felons should be barred from serving as guardians for the incapacitated.

The U.S. has an elder abuse problem, with an increase in reports.

As many state legislators seek ways to curb this growing problem, they are having to come to terms with the fact that the very people the legal system has in place to protect the elderly, are often the source of the abuse themselves: guardians.

Many states have guardianship laws that are ineffective at protecting the elderly from the abuse. Therefore, state legislatures are debating guardianship laws in an attempt to make them better. One such state is Pennsylvania, as the Reading Eagle reports in “Bill would require background checks for guardianship.”

One issue that has caused controversy in Pennsylvania is a proposal that would bar felons from becoming guardians. While that might seem like an obviously good thing at first glance, opponents of the idea point out that it would apply to people who committed felonies in the distant past without further legal problems.

Whatever your opinion is when it comes to felons serving as guardians, it is good that legislatures are discussing the issue of updating guardianship laws to better protect seniors from abuse.

Reference: Reading Eagle (April 14, 2018) “Bill would require background checks for guardianship.”