Guardianship Webinars

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Webinar: A Follow-Up Conversation to Ensuring Effective Communication for People with Disabilities

March 13, 2024 - 12 p.m. EST

We had tremendous interest in our Webinar on Ensuring Effective Communication for People with Disabilities on 1/31 and far more questions than we could get to! We will host a follow up conversation with our guests, Megan Rusciano and Elizabeth Moran, on March 13, 2024 at 12 p.m. ET. Please join us as we answer more questions and offer more resources. If you did not see the webinar on 1/31, we highly recommend watching it in preparation for this conversation.

Past Webinars:

  • Webinar: Breaking Barriers - Inclusive Communication for People with Disabilities in Court (January 2024).  Welcome to the National Center for State Courts (NCSC) and this insightful webinar led by Elizabeth Moran, Executive Director of The Arc of Colorado, and Megan Rusciano, Staff Attorney at the Center for Public Representation. Gain valuable insights and discover effective strategies for clear, accessible, and inclusive communication in judicial processes. Understand the rights of people with disabilities to effective communication and learn strategies for court personnel to reduce communication barriers.
  • Webinar: Finding the Right Fit - Supported Decision-Making as a Less Restrictive Option (September 2023). Learn about the benefits of using Supported Decision-Making (SDM) as an alternative to guardianship. This interview features a conversation with Johnathan Gardner, an individual who has lived experience with SDM and co-chair of the Massachusetts SDM Coalition, and Morgan K. Whitlatch, the director of SDM Initiatives at the Center for Public Representation in Washington, D.C. They discuss the importance of less restrictive alternatives to guardianship and how SDM can be practically applied to help people make their own decisions. The session also provides guidance on how SDM can be used by courts as an alternative to guardianship even if no SDM law exists in their state.
  • Webinar: Guardianships - They Don’t Have to Last Forever (May 2023). In this webinar, you’ll hear from Nicolas Clouse, who discusses his journey to the restoration of rights after guardianship. Mr. Clouse is joined by his attorney Justin Schrock, Harris County (Texas), Judge Jerry Simoneaux, and Sam Crane, legal director at the Quality Trust for Individuals with Disabilities, for a discussion about the important roles judges and attorneys play in guardianship terminations and restoration of rights.
  • Webinar: Reviewing Guardianship and Conservatorship Reports - A Guide for Courts (January 2023). The court’s duty to protect the well-being of an individual doesn't end when it appoints a guardian or conservator. After appointment, the court has an ongoing duty to monitor the guardianship or conservatorship, holding the guardian accountable for ensuring the person’s needs are being met. With a monitoring protocol, the court can identify guardians who are struggling, guide a guardian who needs assistance in fulfilling their duties and the court can stop a guardian from using their court appointed authority to abuse, neglect or exploit an individual. In this NCSC webinar, Hon. Jodi French (VT) and Andrew Thurman, Inspector General Auditor/Investigator for the Okaloosa County (FL) Clerk of Court’s office, detail new well-being and accounting report review protocols.
  • Webinar: Judicial Guardianship Evaluation - A New Tool for Judges (June 2022). Judges who preside over guardianship cases are required to make determinations of capacity and to decide whether a guardianship is necessary to protect individuals who are unable to make decisions on their own behalf. Developed for judges by judges in 22 states, the new Guardianship Evaluation Toolkit is a two-page fillable and printable PDF containing a checklist of relevant factors designed to aid judges in integrating information from multiple sources. The tool also helps judges weigh potential risk factors for abuse in guardianships.
  • Webinar: Reforming Guardianships (June 2021). Guardianships are a fast growing and important responsibility of state courts. They can literally save lives by providing essential support to older adults and people with disabilities. Guardianships also require courts to protect the civil rights and well-being of vulnerable people. Guardians determine where they live, who they can see, what medical care they can receive and how they can or cannot spend their money. So much is at stake that many refer to the dissolution of individual rights under guardianships as the “civil death penalty.” Presenters in this briefing will discuss the current guardianship landscape in the country; the intersection with veterans’, social security, Medicare, and Medicaid benefits; and how the federal government can help to stimulate innovation, fill gaps in the data, and spread best practices around the country.
  • Webinar: How to Protect our Nation's Most Vulnerable Adults through Effective Guardianship Practices. Adult guardianship cases are some of the most complex cases handled in civil and probate courts.  While each state differs in qualifications, processes, and monitoring requirements, there are standards that can guide your court in developing robust practices that enhance both court efficiencies and oversight.  This webinar, led by Dr. Brenda Uekert, is based on NACM’s Adult Guardianship Guide and provides action steps courts can take to improve guardianship practices.  Concrete examples of innovative approaches and collaborative efforts are highlighted.  Consideration is also given to the level of resources available to the court. You can download the Webinar PowerPoint here.