My question involves guardianship in the State of: Florida
I am guardian for my adult cousin in Florida - for both property and person. My cousin has no assets, so the court agreed that I no longer have to file the financial piece. When my Uncle was guardian, he had a lawyer take care of the annual filing requirement. When I started doing this, I thought I'd do it myself, after seeing how much the lawyer was charging. As it turns out, since I am not a Florida lawyer, there was no way for me to obtain the forms. The local legal library had several-year-old forms with the word SAMPLE written across them, so I couldn't copy these. So, I asked the lawyer for the forms, filled them out, and went down to the clerk's office to file them. They informed me that I had to be a lawyer to file the forms and they REFUSED to accept the forms from me. So, forlornly, I went back to the lawyer and had them file the forms.
This seems outrageous on several fronts. One, my cousin has no assets and very, very limited income, so high legal fees should not be required. Two, the lawyer has no knowledge of my cousin and, so their oversight is merely bureaucratic; the lawyer really adds no value to this process and yet they charge hundreds of dollars per hour. And three, why shouldn't I be able to represent myself to a court?
This was the state of affairs a year or two ago. Here's my question (finally). Is this true? In Florida, must I be a lawyer in order to file the annual guardianship paperwork? Is there a way to get around this?