My question involves guardianship in the State of: Pennsylvania
My friend, an elderly woman, was misdiagnosed with Alzheimer's earlier this year. One of her sons and daughter won plenary guardianship over her a few months later. But they disagreed bitterly over the dispensation of her property and were removed from guardianship by the court, who assigned a temporary guardian--a non-profit NGO.
In the meantime, she has recovered her senses after what turned out to be a psychological syndrome brought on by the stress of financial uncertainty. She has been given a clean bill of physical and mental health by numerous doctors and now wants to re-assume control of her life.
But the temporary guardian assigned by the court has proceeded to file a report with the court that the woman's house should be sold. She does not want this to happen, especially with the market way down. The home fell into disrepair in recent years and was in the middle of a full renovation when the temporary guardian stepped in. My friend wants her home renovated (she had taken out a loan to do just that) and rented out for a few years, then sell it for what will be two or even three times what it would go for now (half-renovated and in an historically bad downturn). Or to finish the renovation and just keep renting it out, which will essentially cover her living expenses. Her home is in a highly desirable area.
She had a hearing set up last month about dissolving the guardianship. But the lawyers involved postponed it and held a private conference instead in which they essentially decided with the judge to assign the temporary guardian. Another hearing was recently postponed because the temporary guardian had failed to complete its paperwork. Now they have finished it and want to sell the property at rock-bottom prices ASAP.
My friend is clearly capable of handling her own affairs now and is desperate not to have her property sold for a fraction of its value. She is deeply concerned that the court will not give her back the right to run her own financial affairs, despite the doctor's reports. or will delay her reclaiming them until after her property is sold.
My friend discovered that her court-appointed lawyer has affiliations with the temporary guardian. She does not want him representing her. But her regular lawyer left the case for greener pastures and warned her on the way out that the court may order her to keep her other lawyer and impose permanent guardianship over her financial affairs, especially if her children continue to disagree with each other.
Can the court do this, despite the doctor's reports and woman's desire to reclaim her life?
Will the position of her children have any impact on the court's ruling? Two of them want her to reclaim control of her life, while the third is angry about losing part of plenary guardianship and may try to undermine my friend getting out from under guardianship (that child's lawyer was in on the conference and will continue to be part of the process)? She is also worried that the lawyers agreed to keep her under guardianship during their private conference and are just going through the motions now to rubber stamp their agreement.
Sorry for the long post, but it's a complicated story. Thanks for any input and insight you can give.