You can file papers to go to court and ask the judge to appoint you as guardian. There are several forms you must fill out to open a case.  Read on for more information about the forms you must complete and how to open a case.

Before You Begin

Guardianship cases can be difficult to navigate on your own. There are many court rules and requirements you must follow to succeed in a guardianship case. If you do not follow the rules and requirements, your case could be delayed or even dismissed!

Before filing for guardianship, it is very important to read through every article in the Guardianship Overview section of this website so you understand the concepts involved. If you decide you need legal help to file your case, you can find out where to get legal assistance by visiting Find Legal Help.

When you are ready to file, follow all of the steps below. 


There are programs available to financially assist relatives who are caring for children in their home.  Relatives may be eligible for non-needy caretaker TANF benefits, and those 62 and older may also be eligible for Kinship Care cash benefits and/or legal help.  You can learn more about these programs by visiting your local welfare office, or visiting the Nevada Division of Welfare and Supportive Services website.

Step 1. Complete the Guardianship Papers

A Note About The Forms:

You will need to submit one petition for each child you would like to be a guardian for. 

1 or 2 people can ask to be named the guardian over a child.  All of the forms are designed for 2 people to ask to be the guardians, but if only 1 person is asking to be a guardian, write "n/a" wherever the form asks for information about the second proposed guardian. 

To open a guardianship case, you will need to complete these forms.  Every form below is required for all cases.

  • Civil Court Cover Sheet
  • Confidential Information Sheet
  • Petition for Appointment of Guardian
  • Citation to Appear and Show Cause 

Civil Court Cover Sheet

This form is REQUIRED.  One or two people can ask to be named the guardians over a child. This form asks for basic information about you, any person who wants to be a co-guardian with you, and the children over whom you are asking to be the guardian. You are the Petitioner and any proposed co-guardian is the Co-Petitioner.

Civil Court Cover Sheet (pdf fillable)  


Confidential Information Sheet

This form is REQUIRED.  The proposed guardians must provide some form of identification for themselves and the children. You can provide a copy of each person's driver's license, birth certificate, or social security card (or other types listed on the form). This form must be completed to let the court know what identification you are providing, and a copy of the identification must be attached. This information is filed confidentially and is not available to the public.

Confidential Information Sheet (pdf fillable)

Confidential Information Sheet (pdf)

Petition for Appointment of Guardian

This form is REQUIRED.  This form tells the court who is asking to be named the guardian and why. The person asking to be the guardian is the "proposed guardian/petitioner." If a second person is asking to be a co-guardian, that person is the "proposed second guardian/co-petitioner." The children over whom the guardianship is requested are the "proposed protected minor." All sections must be completed. If something does not apply, write "n/a" in that section.

Petition for Appointment of Guardian (pdf fillable)

Petition for Appointment of Guardian (pdf)

Citation to Appear and Show Cause

This form is REQUIRED.  The judge requires a hearing before deciding whether to approve the guardianship.  The "citation" sets a court date for your request to be named the guardian. Fill out every section except for the "Date and Time of Court Appearance" (that part will be filled out by the court clerk when you file your papers).

Citation to Appear and Show Cause (pdf fillable)

Citation to Appear and Show Cause (pdf)


Step 2. File the Guardianship Papers

After you fill out the papers above, you will need to file them with the district court in your county.  Visit Find My Court if you are not sure where your local district court is located.

The fee for filing guardianship forms is $5.00 for estates that are over $2,500.00. If the estate is less than $2,500.00, there is no filing fee.

If you cannot afford the filing fee, please see Filing Fees and Waivers to find out how to ask the court to waive the fee.


Next Step: Serve the Relatives and Required Agencies

After you complete the steps on this page, a copy of the Petition and the Citation must be served on the the proposed protected minor, if age 14 or older, the children's relatives, and possibly some other agencies. The Court does not serve the papers for you. It is up to YOU to make sure all of the required people are served after you file for guardianship. After you have completed the steps on this page, learn all about how to have the relatives and required agencies served by visiting the Serving the Relatives page.

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.