How do I get guardianship over someone?

Usually, a person must apply to the court to become a guardian over someone else. This requires filing a petition explaining why a guardianship is needed, setting a court hearing, and notifying all of the person’s relatives. A doctor’s certification is also required if the subject of the guardianship is an adult. For more information on how to apply to be a guardian, please see Adult Guardianships or Child Guardianships.

Why do I have to notify the relatives?

The law requires you to serve a copy of the guardianship papers on anyone age 14 or older who is related to the subject of the guardianship within 2 levels of blood relation. This typically includes parents, grandparents, children, grandchildren, spouses, and siblings. The family must be notified so they have a chance to tell the court whether they agree or disagree with the proposed guardianship.

But the relatives have not been involved in our lives for years. Do I really have to serve them? What if I don't know where they are?

Yes. Even if family members have been absent or uninvolved, they are entitled to know about any proposed guardianship. If you don’t know where some relatives are, you must do everything you can to find them so they can be served. If you truly cannot find some people, you can ask the judge for permission to serve them by publication, meaning, putting a notice in a newspaper and mailing documents to their last known address.

If you do not properly notify all of the relatives, the court cannot appoint you the guardian and the court proceedings will be delayed!

I do not live in Nevada. Can I apply to be a guardian?

Yes.  There may be extra requirements for non-resident guardians to ensure the safety of the protected person.

About This Website

This website is intended to provide general information, forms, and resources for people who are representing themselves in Nevada's courts without a lawyer. There may be additional information you need to know depending on where your case is being handled. If you will be representing yourself in Clark County or Washoe County, you should visit those self-help websites for specialized forms and instructions.