2018 South Carolina Code of Laws
Title 62 - South Carolina Probate Code
Section 62-5-309. Delegation of guardian's powers.

Universal Citation: SC Code § 62-5-309 (2018)

Section effective January 1, 2019. See, also, Sections 62-5-104 and 62-5-312 effective until January 1, 2019.

(A) Subject to the rights and powers retained by the ward and except as modified by order of the court, the guardian has the following duties, rights, and powers:

(1) to the extent that it is consistent with the terms of any order by a court of competent jurisdiction relating to detention or commitment of the ward, maintaining custody of the ward and the ability to establish the ward's place of abode within or without this State;

(2) if entitled to custody of his ward, providing for the care, comfort, and maintenance of the ward; the guardian is entitled to receive reasonable compensation for his services and for room and board furnished to the ward as approved by the court;

(3) arranging for appropriate habilitation and rehabilitation services and educational, social, and vocational services to assist the ward in the development of maximum self-reliance and independence;

(4) taking reasonable care of his ward's clothing, furniture, vehicles, and other personal effects, and commencing protective proceedings if other property of his ward is in need of protection;

(5) providing any consents, denials, or approvals necessary to enable the ward to receive or refuse to receive medical or other professional care, counsel, treatment, or service, including institutional care. If there is no conservator and placement or care of the ward requires the execution of an admission agreement or other documents for the ward's placement in a facility, the guardian may execute such documents on behalf of the ward, without incurring personal liability;

(6) if no conservator for the estate of the ward is appointed or if the guardian is also conservator:

(a) instituting proceedings to compel any person under a duty to support the ward or to pay sums for the welfare of the ward to perform his duty;

(b) receiving money and tangible property deliverable to the ward and applying the money and property for support, care, and education of the ward; however, he may not use funds from his ward's estate for room and board or services that he, his spouse, parent, or child have furnished the ward unless a charge for the services or room and board is approved by order of the court made upon notice to at least one of the next of kin of the ward, if notice is possible. He must exercise care to conserve any excess for the ward's needs; and

(c) exercising the ward's rights as trust beneficiary to the extent provided in Article 7, Title 62;

(7) reporting the condition of his ward and of the estate that has been subject to his possession or control to the court, as required by the court or court rule, but at least on an annual basis;

(8) if a conservator has been appointed:

(a) paying over to the conservator all of the ward's estate received by the guardian in excess of those funds expended to meet current expenses for support, care, and education of the ward and accounting to the conservator for funds expended; and

(b) requesting the conservator to expend the ward's estate by payment to the guardian or to third persons or institutions for the ward's care and maintenance;

(9) if co-guardians have been appointed, keeping the other co-guardian informed of all relevant information regarding the care and custody of the ward, including, but not limited to, the identity of the ward's care providers, medical providers, or similar professionals and informing the other co-guardian when scheduling medical appointments for the ward; and

(10) exercising any other power, right, or duty ordered by the court.

(B) A guardian, within thirty days of his appointment, shall file a plan of care. The plan must be based on the actual needs of the ward, taking into consideration the best interest of the ward. The guardian shall revise the plan as the needs and circumstances of the ward require. The guardian shall include in the plan a statement of the extent to which the ward may be able to develop or recover ability for independent decision making and any proposed steps to develop or restore the ward's ability for independent decision making. The court shall approve, disapprove, or modify the plan in informal or formal proceedings, as the court deems appropriate. Nothing herein shall require the court to oversee the plan of care.

(C) A guardian, by a properly executed special power of attorney, may delegate to another person, for a period not to exceed sixty days, any of his powers regarding the care and custody of the ward. The original power of attorney must be filed with the court having jurisdiction over the guardianship.

(D) A guardian is not legally obligated to provide for the ward from the guardian's funds solely by reason of his appointment as guardian.

(E) A guardian is not liable to a third person for acts of the ward solely by reason of the guardianship relationship and is not liable for injury to the ward resulting from the wrongful conduct of a third person providing medical or other care, treatment or service for the ward except to the extent that the guardian failed to exercise reasonable care in choosing the provider.

HISTORY: 1986 Act No. 539, Section 1; 1987 Act No. 171, Section 65; 1997 Act No. 152, Section 21. Formerly Code 1976 Sections 62-5-104 and 62-5-312, renumbered and amended by 2017 Act No. 87 (S.415), Section 5.A, eff January 1, 2019.

Editor's Note

The Reporter's Comments do not reflect the amendment made by 1997 Act No. 152, Section 21, which changed the time period for a delegation of powers from six months to thirty days.

Prior Laws: Former Section 62-5-309 was titled Service and notice in guardianship proceedings, and had the following history: 1986 Act No. 539, Section 1; 1990 Act No. 483, Section 2; 2010 Act No. 244, Section 28, eff June 7, 2010. See now, Code 1976 Sections 62-5-303A and 62-5-303C.

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