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Guardian Ad Litem

What is a guardian ad litem?

A minor cannot be a party to a lawsuit without assistance. Therefore, when a minor is a party to a lawsuit, the court appoints a guardian ad litem to represent the minor.

Who can be a guardian ad litem?

A guardian ad litem must be a legally competent adult. Often, a guardian ad litem is a parent of the minor. However, a court may appoint a disinterested person who has no relationship to the minor if the court determines that the child’s parent is incompetent or has conflicting interests. In such cases, the disinterested person is often an attorney. Some states require special training for a guardian ad litem.

How is a guardian ad litem selected?

The court in which the lawsuit is pending will appoint a guardian ad litem for the minor.

What is the role of a guardian ad litem?

A guardian ad litem is appointed to represent the interests of a minor. Therefore, the guardian ad litem must act in the minor’s best interests.

Copyright 2011 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc.

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