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Permanent Guardianship of a Minor Title 8

MINOR GUARDIANSHIP A.R.S. § 8-871 Juvenile Court Permanent Guardianship

This type of Guardianship only arises out of a DCS case. It must be the case plan proposed by DCS and approved by the court at a permanency planning hearing. Generally, a case plan of guardianship is chosen for older children.

 The court may establish a permanent guardianship between a child and the guardian if the prospective guardianship is in the child’s best interests and all of the following apply:

 1. The child has been adjudicated a dependent child.

 2. The child has been in the custody of the prospective permanent guardian for at least nine months as a dependent child. The court may waive this requirement for good cause.

 3. If the child is in the custody of ADES/DCS have they made reasonable efforts to reunite the parent and child and further efforts would be unproductive. The court may waive this requirement.

 4. The likelihood that the child would be adopted is remote or termination of parental rights would not be in the child’s best interests.

 5. A court order for guardianship takes from the birth parents of legal custody but does not terminate the parents rights.

 Who may file for Guardianship? Any party to a dependency proceeding may file a motion for permanent guardianship. In other words, its usually filed by DCS but can be offered as an alternative by any party.

 Who may be appointed as Guardian?

  • The court may consider any adult, including a relative or foster parent, as a perma
  • nent guardian. An agency or institution may not be a permanent guard
  • The court shall appoint a person nominated by the child if the child is at least twelve years of age, unless it would not be in the child’s best interests.
  • The court shall consider the child’s objection to the appointment of the person nominated as permanent guardian.

What does it mean to be a Guardian? A permanent guardian has all of the rights and responsibilities of a parent. For more details.

Can a permanent guardianship be terminated? Yes, but the standards for revocation are different than other minor guardianships.

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