Guardianship Laws

Adult Guardianship Statute: 
Right to Counsel in Statute: Initial Guardianship Proceedings: 
Right to Counsel in Statute: Post-Appointment Guardianship Proceedings: 
Not stated
Right to Counsel Statututory Citation: 

Md. Est. & Trusts Code Ann. §§ 13-211(b), 13-705(d)

Right to Counsel Definition in Statute: 

Unless the alleged disabled person has counsel of his own choice, the court shall appoint an attorney to represent him in the proceeding.

Advocacy Role of Counsel Defined in Statute: 
Not stated
Professional Rules &/or Ethics Opinions: 

MRPC Rule 1.14: (a) When a client's capacity to make adequately considered decisions in connection with a representation is diminished whether because of minority, mental impairment or for some other reason, the lawyer shall, as far as reasonably possible, maintain a normal client-lawyer relationship with the client. (b) When the lawyer reasonably believes that the client has diminished capacity, is at risk of substantial physical, financial, or other harm unless action is taken and cannot adequately act in the client's own interest, the lawyer may take reasonably necessary protective action, including consulting with individuals or entities that have the ability to take action to protect the client and, in appropriate cases, seeking the appointment of a guardian ad litem, conservator, or guardian.

Case Law Discussing Role of Counsel: 

The duties of an attorney may at times directly conflict with the duties of a guardian ad litem. It is the role of an attorney to explain the proceedings to his client and advise him of his rights, keep his confidences, advocate his position, and protect his interests." In re Lee, 754 A.2d 426, 438-39 (Md. Ct. Spec. App. 2000).

Other Important Info: 

Although there is no statutory provision explicitly addressing post-appointment right to counsel, the guardianship statute states that the appointment of a guardian does not deprive the ward of any civil rights. See Md. Code Ann. § 13-706. The general statute explains the rights, powers, and duties of guardians. See Md. Code Ann.§ 13-708.

Discuss Guardianship or Supported Decision-Making?: