Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Ohio House Passes Bill to Revise Adult Guardianship Procedures

COLUMBUS—Today the Ohio House of Representatives unanimously passed legislation to enact the Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act.

House Bill 27, sponsored by Representatives Peter Stautberg (R-Anderson Twp.) and Tom Letson (D-Warren), creates procedures for the resolution of disputes involving the jurisdiction of courts of different states over adult guardianships.

Some of the provisions of the bill include:

- Authorizing the issuance of emergency orders by probate courts to freeze the financial assets of an individual if that person has gone missing or has been taken to another state, or if there is reason to believe the order is needed to prevent financial harm to the individual

- Requiring that under the normal proceedings for the appointment of a guardian of an adult that the adult be subject to the jurisdiction of the Ohio probate court under the bill and delineating the jurisdiction of the Ohio probate court when Ohio is not the respondent’s home state

- Establishing rules for deciding whether an Ohio probate court should proceed with, stay or dismiss a proceeding for the appointment of a guardian or issuance of a protective order when a proceeding is also filed in another state

- Authorizing an Ohio probate court to request and provide information with a court of another state regarding adult guardianship and protective proceedings, including the ability to take testimony in another state

“I’m very pleased that this bill passed and received so much support by the members of the House,” Representative Stautberg said. “This is an important step in prioritizing the protective proceedings for adults who are no longer able to care for themselves and facilitate cooperation among states with respect to the appropriate exercise of jurisdiction over these proceedings.”

House Bill 27 will now move to the Ohio Senate for further debate and consideration.