Adult Guardianship Registry

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In 2013, the Indiana General Assembly provided funding to establish the Adult Guardianship Office under the Indiana Supreme Court. This office serves as a resource for courts and the general public on issues related to adult guardianship. It also administers grant funding to increase the number of volunteer-based guardianship programs throughout the state. In 2016, more than $800,000 in grant funding was awarded to 14 volunteer-based guardianship programs that serve 28 counties. Currently, these programs serve more than 450 incapacitated adults in Indiana who cannot make personal and financial decisions regarding their care.

In 2016, Indiana implemented a new form to be filed with all new guardianship cases: the Guardianship Registry Form. This form has been used to develop an online guardianship registry. It provides non-confidential information to the public, such as the name of the protected person, name of the guardian, protected person’s birth year, whether the guardianship case is active or expired, when letters of guardianship were issued, county issuing the guardianship, and guardianship cause number. Previously, each court had its own individual process for tracking and monitoring guardianship cases. The lack of statewide uniformity in this process made it difficult to provide statistical data for Indiana. Therefore, the Division of State Court Administration provided grant funds to implement this new Guardianship Registry process.

As each new petition for guardianship is filed in Indiana, the case is entered and maintained in the Guardianship Registry. When crucial case benchmarks are reached, alerts are provided to the court via the Registry to confirm that the proper documentation and actions are taken to ensure the guardianship remains in compliance with state statutes. The Guardianship Registry has many benefits:

  • tracks and maintains guardianship cases, making records more accurate, timely, and in compliance with state statutes
  • provides useful and timely information to the public on the current status of guardianship cases throughout the state
  • alerts courts of important case benchmarks, accounting and inventory due dates, required Guardian Ad Litem appointments, and case expiration
  • generates Court orders and guardianship letters
  • a vital tool for hospitals, banks, law enforcement, mental health facilities, government agencies, and other service providers who are often placed in emergency situations where knowing whether someone is under a guardianship and who needs to be contacted is critical
  • an important tool for courts by tracking the number and types of guardianship cases filed in each jurisdiction

You can access the Guardianship Registry here. If you have a minor, disabled, or elderly loved one who may be in need of guardianship services, please contact our office.

Source: http://www.in.gov/judiciary/admin/3169.htm
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Monthly Tour Programs for Individuals with Early-Stage Dementia

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On the third Tuesday of each month, the Fort Wayne Museum of Art will host tour programs specially designed for individuals with an early-stage diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease or another form of early-stage dementia. Museum guides who have been trained to effectively communicate with individuals with early-stage dementia diagnoses will be leading the tours. The program is a partnership between the Fort Wayne Museum of Art and the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter. It is designed to provide an experience of the visual arts to individuals with an early-stage diagnosis of dementia  in a way that meets their needs.

This new program is modeled after the Museum of Modern Art’s program in New York City, which was developed during its Alzheimer’s project initiative from 2007 to 2014. From that project, the Museum of Modern Art developed training materials to be adapted for museums across the country. These training materials were implemented at the Indianapolis Museum of Art with great success. Therefore, the Alzheimer’s Association Greater Indiana Chapter staff felt that program could also be successful in Fort Wayne.

Tours are free of charge for participants and their caretakers and are held on the third  Tuesday of each month at 2:00 p.m., lasting about an hour. If you are interested in bringing a loved one with dementia to the monthly tours, you must call the Fort Wayne office of the Alzheimer’s Association first at 800-272-3900 to have your loved one pre-screened. Individuals will not be able to participate in the program unless they are first pre-screened for an early-stage diagnosis and you register for the program by calling the Alzheimer’s Association.

2017 Tour Dates: August 15, September 19, October 17, November 21, and December 19.

Nine Things to Know Before Going to a Funeral Home

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Things to think about when going to a funeral home:

  1. You can pre-plan without pre-paying.

Pre-planning your funeral and making final arrangements in advance is a great idea. It helps your family make difficult decisions during an emotional time. It can also give you peace of mind knowing that things are in order. However, it is not always necessary to pre-pay when you pre-plan your funeral. If you decide to pre-pay, be sure to look carefully at the contract and familiarize yourself with local and state laws.

  1. You can rent a cremation urn or casket for the memorial service.

Most funeral homes offer rentals that you can use for the funeral or memorial services. This can save on the costs of a casket or an urn from the funeral home. It can also save you on costly overnight shipping charges if you order a casket or urn online. You can often rent a high-end attractive casket for the public service without the high costs attached. You can then have the body buried in a less costly container or taken to the crematorium for cremation.

  1. Ask the funeral home for low-cost options.

Simply ask if they have more budget-friendly casket or urn options that fit your needs. By being upfront about what you want and need, the funeral home can better help you find a casket or urn that is suitable for you and your family.

  1. You can use an “alternative container” for cremation.

There is no law that you must use an urn or casket for cremation. Every provider of cremation services is required to tell you that alternative containers (such as cardboard) are available. Or perhaps you have a special container that you would like to use for cremation rather than purchasing an urn.

  1. Veterans with honorable discharge can get free burial services.

The National Cemetery Administration of the U.S. Department of Veteran’s Affairs offers offers free burial and other services (such as perpetual care and personalized headstones) to veterans and their spouses. The funeral related services are pre-specified and generally only apply to burial at a national cemetery. To see if this may work for your situation, you can visit https://www.cem.va.gov/cem/burial_benefits/index.asp.

  1. Ask for a price list for all services.

Many funeral homes offer packages designed to help you save when purchasing a variety of services. However, these packages may have services that you do not want. If you ask, funeral homes are required to provide an itemized pricing list for all services they offer. You can even do this over the phone, as consumer protection laws require that the funeral home provide funeral costs over the phone. It may be cheaper to pay only for the services you want and need rather than purchasing a package.

  1. Most services are optional.

You may be uncertain about what you really need. Or perhaps the wide array of options offered makes you feel like purchasing more services than necessary. Whatever the situation, remember that almost all services offered by the funeral home are optional.

  1. You can receive a written statement of costs before you pay.

It may be a good idea to ask the funeral home to provide you with a written statement and explanation of all costs associated with the funeral, burial, and/or cremation services you have chosen. This is helpful to make you sure you are not choosing services or products you do not want.

  1. Bring a friend.

It is a good idea to bring a friend with you as you are shopping for and deciding on funeral options. If you bring a friend who was not as close to the decedent, they can give helpful opinions that are not based on emotion.

Source: http://www.usurnsonline.com/funeral-resources/10-things-funeral-home-wont-tell/