Changing Guardians

Sometimes a guardian is unwilling or unable to continue acting as the guardian.  If that is the case, either the guardian or someone else can ask the court to release the guardian. Read on for more information about how to ask the court to change the guardian.

How to Change Guardians

A guardian may not be able to continue acting as the guardian for many reasons.  A guardian may not have the time, may have become incapacitated, may have passed away, or might be failing or neglecting to perform their duties making them unsuitable to continue as guardian. 

The guardian can be released in one of two ways, which are explained more fully below:

  1. The guardian can voluntarily resign.
  2. Someone else can ask the guardian to be removed. 


If there is not a co-guardian who will continue to serve, someone must also file paperwork asking to be appointed the new guardian going forward.  Two separate petitions will have to be filed - one for the current guardian to resign or be removed, and one to appoint a replacement guardian.

Anyone who wants to be the new guardian must complete all of the papers and follow all of the steps under the Filing for Guardianship Over an Adult or Filing for Guardianship Over a Child section of this website.

It is best to file the resignation/removal petition at the same time as the appointment petition so the court can set the same court date for both matters.  The current guardians and the new proposed guardians should all attend the hearing to explain the reason for the change to the judge.


If a guardian does not want to be the guardian anymore, the guardian can petition the court to resign.  The guardian must explain why he or she no longer wants to be the guardian, and who will take over as guardian. 

To ask the court to resign, download the following packet and follow all of the instructions included.

Petition for Resignation of Guardian (pdf)

Removal of a Guardian

If a guardian is failing in their duties, or cannot voluntarily resign for any reason, another person can petition the court to have the guardian removed.  The person will have to explain why the guardian is no longer able to serve anymore.

To ask the court to remove the existing guardian, download the following packet and follow all of the instructions included.

Petition for Removal of Guardian (pdf)