The Guardianship Tribunal has power to make a financial management order on behalf of a person who is not capable of managing their affairs. The Tribunal can only consider financial management applications about people who have assets in NSW.
A financial manager may make decisions about any aspect of that person’s financial affairs unless the Tribunal has specified that a part of the person’s estate is excluded from management.
The person appointed must be over 18 and suitable for the role. To determine the suitability of a person as a financial manager, the Tribunal may ask the person about their experience managing money, their own financial history and any conflict of interest that may exist.
If there is no person suitable or willing to be the financial manager, the Tribunal can appoint the NSW Trustee & Guardian as financial manager.
A financial manager does not make personal or lifestyle decisions – that is the role of a guardian (whether appointed by a document at a person’s request. The Guardianship Tribunal also has power to make a guardianship order appointing a guardian to make personal or lifestyle decisions on behalf of a person who is unable to make those decisions for themselves.
The most effective way of avoiding the need for an application to the Guardianship Tribunal is to have in place an enduring power of attorney or appoint an enduring guardian so you choose who you wish to manage your affairs and lifestyle decisions when you can’t.
We have experience in the preparation of and defence of applications to the Guardianship Tribunal where applications for financial management orders are being sought and have appeared in the Tribunal on numerous occasions.
We are able to take action to seek to overturn the appointment of a financial manager where an appointment has been inappropriately made or where the conduct of an appointed financial manager is contrary to the interests of the grantor or otherwise illegal.
A guardian appointed by the Guardianship Tribunal is someone who is legally authorised to make personal or lifestyle decisions on behalf of a person who is unable to make those decisions for him or herself. The Tribunal can only consider guardianship applications about people who are resident in NSW and over the age of 16.
A guardian is not authorised to make financial decisions (that is the role of a financial manager appointed by the Guardianship Tribunal or a person with a power of attorney).
The kinds of decisions a guardian can be authorised to make include:
- where the person should live
- what support services the person should use
- what healthcare and medical treatment the person should receive
- whether restrictive practices are appropriate in the management of the person’s behaviour.
Any person (there can be more than one appointed) over 18 who is willing and able to take on the role as guardian can be appointed. If there is no suitable person willing to take on the role, the Tribunal can appoint the NSW Trustee & Guardian.
We appear regularly in the Guardianship Tribunal in relation to applications for guardianship orders.
We are able to take action to seek to overturn the appointment of a guardian where an appointment has been inappropriately made or where the interests of the grantor are not being appropriately considered.