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The Florida Senate

2006 Florida Statutes

Judicial review of guardianship reports.
Section 744.369, Florida Statutes 2006

744.369  Judicial review of guardianship reports.--

(1)  The court shall review the initial guardianship report within 60 days after the filing of the clerk's report of findings to the court. The court shall review the annual guardianship report within 30 days after the filing of the clerk's report of findings to the court.

(2)  The court may appoint a general or special magistrate to assist the court in its review function. The court may require the general or special magistrate to conduct random field audits.

(3)  If an initial or annual report is not timely filed, the court shall order the guardian to file the report or to show cause why the report has not been filed within the prescribed time. Service of the order and subsequent proceedings shall be governed by s. 744.3685

(4)  The court must review the initial and annual guardianship report to determine that the report:

(a)  Meets the needs of the ward;

(b)  Authorizes the guardian to act only in areas in which an adult ward has been declared incapacitated; and

(c)  Conforms to all other requirements of the law.

(5)  Upon examining the initial or annual guardianship report, the court shall enter an order approving or disapproving the report. If the court disapproves the report, the court shall order the guardian to provide a revised report or proof of any item in the report to the court. The guardian shall do so within a reasonable amount of time set by court.

(6)  If the guardian fails to comply with the court order entered pursuant to subsection (5), the court shall take immediate action to compel compliance or to sanction the guardian after a hearing with appropriate notice to the ward, the ward's counsel, if any, the guardian, and the ward's next of kin.

(7)  If an objection has been filed to a report, the court shall set the matter for hearing and shall conduct the hearing within 30 days after the filing of the objection. After the hearing, the court shall enter a written order either approving, or ordering modifications to, the report. If an objection is found to be without merit, the court may assess costs and attorney's fees against the person who made the objection.

(8)  The approved report constitutes the authority for the guardian to act in the forthcoming year. The powers of the guardian are limited by the terms of the report. The annual report may not grant additional authority to the guardian without a hearing, as provided for in s. 744.331, to determine that the ward is incapacitated to act in that matter.

History.--s. 54, ch. 89-96; s. 38, ch. 90-271; s. 1, ch. 99-277; s. 96, ch. 2004-11.