3B:12-24. Issue of incapacity triable without jury unless jury is demanded.

In civil actions or proceedings for the determination of incapacity or for the appointment of a guardian for an alleged incapacitated person, the trial of the issue of incapacity may be had without a jury pursuant to Rules Governing the Courts of the State of New Jersey, unless a trial by jury is demanded by the alleged incapacitated person or someone on his behalf. 

3B:12-24.1  Determination by the court of need for guardianship services, specific services.

  1. General Guardian. If the court finds that an individual is incapacitated as defined in N.J.S.3B:1-2 and is without capacity to govern himself or manage his affairs, the court may appoint a general guardian who shall exercise all rights and powers of the incapacitated person. The general guardian of the estate shall furnish a bond conditioned as required by the provisions of N.J.S.3B:15-1 et seq., unless the guardian is relieved from doing so by the court.
  2. Limited Guardian. If the court finds that an individual is incapacitated and lacks the capacity to do some, but not all, of the tasks necessary to care for himself, the court may appoint a limited guardian of the person, limited guardian of the estate, or limited guardian of both the person and estate.  A court, when establishing a limited guardianship shall make specific findings regarding the individual’s capacity, including, but not limited to which areas, such as residential, educational, medical, legal, vocational and financial decision making, the incapacitated person retains sufficient capacity to manage. A judgment of limited guardianship may specify the limitations upon the authority of the guardian or alternatively the areas of decision making retained by the person. The limited guardian of the estate shall furnish a bond in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.3B:15-1 et seq., unless the guardian is relieved from doing so by the court.
  3. Pendente lite; Temporary Guardian.
    1. Whenever a complaint is filed in the Superior Court to declare a person incapacitated and appoint a guardian, the complaint may also request the appointment of a temporary guardian of the person or estate, or both, pendente lite. Notice of a pendente lite temporary guardian application shall be given to the alleged incapacitated person or alleged incapacitated person’s attorney or the attorney appointed by the court to represent the alleged incapacitated person.
    2. Pending a hearing for the appointment of a guardian, the court may for good cause shown and upon a finding that there is a critical need or risk of substantial harm, including, but not limited to:
      1. the physical or mental health, safety and well-being of the person may be harmed or jeopardized;
      2. the property or business affairs of the person may be repossessed, wasted, misappropriated, dissipated, lost, damaged or diminished or not appropriately managed; 
      3. it is in the best interest of the alleged incapacitated person to have a temporary guardian appointed and such may be dealt with before the hearing to determine incapacity can be held, after any notice as the court shall direct, appoint a temporary guardian pendente lite of the person or estate, or both, of the alleged incapacitated person. 

3B:12-42.  Reporting condition of ward’s person and property to court.

A guardian shall report at time intervals as ordered by the court, unless otherwise waived by the court, the condition of the ward and the condition of the ward’s estate which has been subject to the guardian’s possession or control as ordered by the court.

  1. A report by the guardian of the person shall state or contain:
    1. the current mental, physical and social condition of the ward;
    2. the living arrangements for all addresses of the ward during the reporting period;
    3. the medical, educational, vocational and other services provided to the ward and the guardian’s opinions as to the adequacy of the ward’s care;
    4. a summary of the guardian’s visits with the ward and activities on the ward’s behalf and the extent to which the ward has participated in decision-making;
    5. if the ward is institutionalized, whether or not the guardian considers the current plan for care, treatment or habitation to be in the ward’s best interest;
    6. plans for future care; and
    7. a recommendation as to the need for continued guardianship and any recommended changes in the scope of the guardianship.
  2. The court may appoint an individual to review a report, interview the ward or guardian and make any other investigation the court directs.
  3. Agencies authorized to act pursuant to P.L.1985, c. 298 (C.52:27G-20 et seq.), P.L.1985, c. 145 (C.30:6D-23 et seq.), P.L.1965, c. 59 (C.30:4-165.1 et seq.) and P.L.1970, c. 289 (C.30:4-165.7 et seq.) and public officials appointed as limited guardians of the person for medical purposes for individuals in psychiatric facilities listed in R.S.30:1-7 shall be exempt from this section.
Amended 2005, c.304, s.29. 
NJ State Legislature Title 3B

Caring for our Elders