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Duties of a Guardian or Co-decision-Maker

The guardian or co-decision-maker must act in the best interests of the dependent adult. They must protect the adult’s rights and should encourage the adult to be as involved as possible in making decisions.

A guardian or co-decision-maker may nominate in their Will any person to act in their place. If the guardian or co-decision-maker dies, the nomination takes effect immediately but must be confirmed by a court within six months of the death.

A guardian or co-decision-maker must act...

  • diligently
  • in good faith
  • in the best interests of the adult and in the case of a property guardian or co-decision-maker in the best interests of the adult's estate (i.e. real and personal property)
  • in a way that protects the adult's civil and human rights
  • in a way that encourages the adult to participate in financial decision-making and act independently, to the greatest extent possible
  • in a way that limits his or her interference in the adult's life as much as possible

Property Guardians or Co-Decision-Makers

Within three months of being appointed, a property guardian or co-decision-maker must file with the court an inventory of the property owned by the adult. They must also provide an annual accounting to the court every year thereafter.

If the dependent adult or some other interested person, such as a close relative, is not satisfied with the way the property guardian or co-decision-maker is handling matters, they can ask the public guardian and trustee to review the accounting. If necessary, a court can appoint a new property guardian or co-decision-maker.

Examples of transactions that may cause concern include: a significant drop in net worth; the transfer of property into joint names with the property guardian or property co-decision-maker; and unusual expenses. Under the law, property guardians and property co-decision-makers must not make gifts to third parties totalling more than $1,000.00 in an accounting period or make a gift to themselves without the authorization of the court. Property guardians and property co-decision-makers are not permitted to make or change a will for an adult.

— Public Guardian and Trustee

Personal Guardians or Co-decision-Makers

A personal guardian or personal co-decision-maker does not have authority to make certain decisions, such as...

  • withdrawal of life support systems
  • organ or tissue donations
  • sterilization procedures
  • divorce proceedings
  • choices based on religious beliefs and freedoms

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PLEA gratefully acknowledges our primary core funder the Law Foundation of Saskatchewan for their continuing and generous support of our organization.