Enduring Guardianship

Positive Action Today To Protect Your Health and Wellbeing Tomorrow

Enduring Power of Guardianship

Future life events may make it difficult or impossible for you to make crucial wellbeing choices — Enduring Guardianship enables a trusted friend, relative, or professional to make medical and care decisions on your behalf.

Planning your estate is more than just writing a Will and deciding where and how your investments and assets are distributed — it’s about taking care of your needs. 

Addressing circumstances where illness, accident, or cognitive degeneration prevent you from adequate self-care — it’s an impressively positive step to take today. Delivering reassurance that if or when the time comes, your health and comfort are ensured and protected.

At Falzon Legal, we fully understand that considering a time when you cannot cope sufficiently can be a poignant and upsetting thought process. Our continually supportive and understanding approach allows us to guide you considerately through this scenario.

The Enduring Guardian Meaning

The Guardianship Act (1987) permits you, while you still have mental clarity, to appoint an Enduring Guardian to make personal, health, and lifestyle decisions on your behalf when you, unfortunately, cannot.

However, while you are free to choose your Enduring Guardian, they cannot be someone who:

  • Delivers medical or health care to you on a professional basis.
  • Provides your housing or accommodation.
  • Delivers support services for your wellbeing or lifestyle.
  • Is a relative of the three persons above.

If you wish, you can select more than just one Enduring Guardian. Should this be your preferred route, we suggest you select persons who you know will cooperate and communicate well together — and who you trust to jointly look after your interests.

Do I Need To Make an Appointment of Enduring Guardian?

You want to make your own choices regarding your lifestyle — the support services you receive, the healthcare you require, and where you live and reside. It can be challenging to contemplate a time when you’re unable to competently make these everyday decisions.

Yet, an accident, illness, serious injury, or degenerating mental capacity could unexpectedly take away your choice-making ability.


Being Proactive in Your Medical and Care Choices

Arranging an Enduring Guardian is an impressively proactive step to safeguard against this scenario — not an admission of failure.

As it only becomes active when you lose capacity — while you’re still able to manage your affairs, you remain completely in control. It’s simply a reassuring comfort — knowing that should the unexpected happen, your wellbeing and interests are protected.

However, if you make no provision for an Enduring Guardian — the matter is out of your hands.

If you lose the ability to make personal decisions adequately, the Guardianship Tribunal will appoint a person to look after your interests. Should they be unable to find a suitable Enduring Guardian — the Public Guardian will then manage your lifestyle choices.

This could mean that a person who you wouldn’t personally choose, or indeed someone you have never met, is making health and personal decisions on your behalf.

Falzon Legal will sympathetically and patiently work with you to arrange an Enduring Guardian — giving you the reassurance that in the future, your interests and wellbeing are taken care of by someone you genuinely trust.

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What Powers Does an Enduring Guardian Have?

You decide the scope of your Enduring Guardian’s decision-making — you are always in control.

Their responsibilities, known as functions, and the areas they cover, are stated by yourself. You can add, remove, and alter these functions on the Guardianship form as you wish. 

Generally speaking, Enduring Guardianship permits choices on your healthcare, accommodation, and support services.

If you choose to have more than one Enduring Guardian, you can allocate the functions between your appointees as you see fit. Additionally, you can state that you want your Guardian to consult with a friend or close familiar member in regard to particular decision-making areas.

However, some functions are not permitted by your Enduring Guardian. For example, they may not:

  • Create a Last Will and Testament on your behalf.
  • Look after your finances — addressed by the Power of Attorney.
  • Vote for you in elections.
  • Agree for you to marry.
  • Override your health choices as stated in an Advance Care Directive.

Difference Between Power of Attorney and Enduring Guardianship

In NSW, there is a clear difference between Enduring Power of Attorney and Guardianship.

While Enduring Guardians look after your personal wellbeing — healthcare, lifestyle, accommodation, and support services — Power of Attorney addresses your financial matters.

Generally speaking, it allows your chosen person — the Attorney, who can be a friend or relative — to fulfil duties such as:

  • Running your bank accounts.
  • Managing your investments.
  • Selling and buying property.
  • Paying your bills.
  • Spending money on your behalf.
  • Signing legal documents.

At Falzon Legal, we can work together to patiently and compassionately discuss Power of Attorney, Enduring Guardianship, and indeed, Advance Care Directives. Looking at all matters together means having a holistic approach to your entire health and wellbeing future.

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Enduring Guardian and Advance Care Directives

An Advance Care Directive — sometimes known as Advance Medical or Advanced Care Plan — states your wishes regarding medical care, should you be unable in the future to express your desires.

When in place, it can often provide ease and comfort to your loved ones and/or Enduring Guardian — as they know, without question, your healthcare intentions were stated at a time of clarity. It can include any treatment that you wish to refuse, your palliative care preferences, and chosen health outcomes.

Your Enduring Guardian cannot overrule your Advance Care Directive without taking legal action.

We will gently navigate you through Advance Care Plans — laying out your options, areas you can include, and the possible outcomes of your choices. Continually supportive, we will considerately ensure you remain comfortable through what can be an emotionally affecting thought process.

Who Should I Choose as My Enduring Guardian?

The person you select as your Enduring Guarding should be someone you completely trust, and who you feel completely comfortable with to make decisions on your behalf.

While there are no legal prerequisites to be an Enduring Guardian, apart from being over the age of 18, we recommend considering someone who:

  • Has a history of acting responsibly.
  • Understands your views on care — both personal and medical.
  • Respects you.
  • Respects your wishes.
  • Respects your culture and religion.
  • Respects your confidentiality.
  • Has the intelligence and maturity to act for you.
  • Consents, and is comfortable, to be your Enduring Guardian.

At Falzon Legal, we’re more than happy to discuss the responsibilities of an Enduring Guardian — and suggest characteristics that you should be looking for. We can also meet together with your prospective choice, to outline the duties and answer any questions.

Does an Enduring Guardianship Last Forever?

An Enduring Guardianship will continue to be in place, unless:

  • You pass on.
  • Your appointed Guardian dies, becomes incapacitated, or resigns.
  • You revoke the Guardianship.
  • You marry — unless your marriage is to the Enduring Guardian.
  • A Tribunal nullifies the Enduring Guardianship.

As long as you remain capable of making your own choices and decisions, you can revoke the Enduring Guardian appointment at any time — through the use of a Revocation of an Appointment of Enduring Guardian document. Naturally, we will assist you with this.

Remember, while you have clear cognitive capacity — you’re always the one in control. You can easily select another person to become your Guardian — or indeed alter, add, or remove the functions of an appointed Enduring Guardian.

Falzon Legal Is Your Compassionate Enduring Guardianship Solicitor in Parramatta

Relentlessly supportive and ceaselessly professional — Falzon Legal will navigate you considerately and gently through appointing an Enduring Guardian.

Considering the prospect that, one day, you may be unable to make your own lifestyle decisions is a strong, empowering move.

Taking you patiently through every step — from its implications, scope, and implementation — we bestow reassurance and guidance.

And, we can start with nothing more than a simple chat.

Face-to-face interaction is always the best option — allowing us to grow in friendship and trust together. Whether at our office, your home, or place of residential or medical care — we can work through the whole process together.

Planning today for your wellbeing tomorrow presents you with comfort, solace, and peace — allow Falzon Legal to guide you.

Enduring Guardian FAQs

What Is the Enduring Power of Guardianship Meaning?

An Enduring Guardian is someone who makes decisions on your behalf in the areas of lifestyle and healthcare — when you’re unable to make such choices yourself. 

You can set up an Enduring Guardianship at any point while you still have mental clarity.  It only becomes effective in the event that you lose the ability to make informed decisions.

What Is the Difference Between Enduring Power of Attorney and Guardianship?

Should you lose the ability to make your own decisions, Power of Attorney recognises a person you appoint to make choices on your behalf relating to finance and investments. Enduring Guardianship is similar, but addresses the areas of wellbeing, health, and accommodation.

You are the person who can appoint both positions while you still have the mental capacity to do so.

What Powers Does an Enduring Guardian Have?

An Enduring Guardian is a legally appointed person who can make accommodation, lifestyle, and health choices on your behalf — if you lose the ability or mental cognition to do so.

Who Can Witness Enduring Power of Guardianship in NSW?

In NSW, only an eligible person is permitted to bear witness to Enduring Guardianship. This includes:

  • A Legal practitioner from Australia.
  • An overseas registered solicitor.
  • Registrar of the court.
  • Eligible member of the NSW Trustee and Guardian.
  • Eligible member of the Office of the Public Guardian.

Can My Wife Be My Enduring Guardian?

Yes. Your wife, partner, a family member, or trusted friend can be your Enduring Guardian. It can be anyone willing to take on the responsibility and whom you know will make decisions in your best interests.

It cannot be your current medical, accommodation, or support service provider. 

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