My question involves guardianship in the State of: PA and VA.
Hello. In 2007, my wife and I became legal guardians of a young boy. He is her second cousin. His mother passed away years ago and his father has mental issues that prevent him from having custody. At the time he had a biological grandmother and grandfather. The grandmother had recently been diagnosed with cancer and was denied custody due to that prognosis. My wife and I stepped in so he could return to PA to spend time with his grandparents.
Both of his grandparents have since passed away. His grandfather passed last year and willed his grandson a portion of his estate. However, the life insurance company refuses to grant this money, because they claim my wife and I cannot "prove" we are his financial guardians.
I'm very confused, as I would have thought financial guardianship implicit to legal guardianship, unless specified otherwise in a separate arrangement.
We are of course frustrated, as he had hoped to build a nice fund for him to claim when he turns 18, to use for college or whatever he deems worthy. The insurance company will not explain to us the difference, or how to prove we are financial guardians. The state-appointed lawyer (from Virginia, where the boy resided until we took him) has sent a letter stating that we are his guardians (but not explicitly calling out "financial" guardians) and does not see why this should not move forward.
My question is, do we have a course of action available to us? Can we somehow apply for financial guardianship? And who would need to approve it? My research suggests his legal guardians...which would be us.
We were completely unaware that this was regarded as a separate entity, or else we certainly would have done it when we first filed for custody of him. Any guidance or resources would be tremendously appreciated.