What is an Enduring Guardian?
An Enduring Guardian is someone you appoint to make decisions about where you will live, what health care you will receive and to make medical decisions on your behalf when you are not capable of making those decisions yourself.
Enduring Guardianship only comes into effect if or when you lose capacity and it will only be effective during the period of incapacity.
Appointing an Enduring Guardian may provide a sense of security in knowing that if anything happens and you are unable to make decisions for yourself that you have appointed someone you trust to make those decisions on your behalf.
Why do I need an Enduring Guardian?
When planning ahead, many people focus on making a Will and a Power of Attorney but they do not consider what will happen if they find themselves unable to make lifestyle and medical decisions if they lose capacity due to illness or accident.
An Enduring Guardian and Enduring Power of Attorney are complementary documents. They can be made separately or together giving you the choice as to who you wish to appoint to have the authority to make decisions on your behalf, if you are unable to make these decisions for yourself.
What happens if you do not have an Enduring Guardian and you lose capacity?
If you lose capacity and you have not appointed an Enduring Guardian, an application will need to be made to the Guardianship Division, NSW Civil & Administrative Tribunal to have a Guardian appointed for you. If there is no one suitable to be your guardian the Tribunal may appoint an independent Public official called the Public Guardian.