Monday, September 06, 2010

Iowa Guardianship Proceedings in the News

Another guardianship proceeding in Iowa is getting some notoriety lately after another one recently was in the news. The Des Moines Register has been following a story involving a 16 year old mom's battle to get her 1 year old daughter back from the 16 year old's family members. Unfortunately, the story highlights some legitimate concerns over the guardianship process in general:

(1) Publicity - This is open record for the whole world to watch your life on stage. Like all court proceedings, they are open proceedings for the public or the media. The Des Moines Register brought in their legal counsel to prevent/"urge" Associate Probate Judge Klotz from closing the proceedings and requests to keep the reporter out of the courtroom.

(2) Delay - The time involved in getting the facts before the court and for the court to review the evidence can take months. The challenge is do you take the child away from the parent for safety concerns or do you return the child to the parent when there is allegedly some danger involved. Tough call.

Guardianship proceedings are continuing to grow in numbers and crowd the court docket. Guardianships can cover individuals from 1 day old infants to 109 year old individuals and everything in between.

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