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Your child may need a guardian ad litem

When a child needs to go to court for some reason, it's possible to have a court-appointed representative take the place of the child during the proceedings. This person is known as a guardian ad litem.

The purpose of a guardian ad litem is to make sure the child has fair representation in court due to being unable to represent him or herself successfully. For example, if a child is only 4 or 5 years old, it's unlikely that child can represent him or herself in a successful manner. The same can be true if a person has severe mental health conditions or is incapacitated in some way; having someone represent him or her is the only fair way to go to court and to go through the motions.

Usually, a guardian ad litem is a close relative of a child. For instance, if your child has an older sibling, that sibling may represent him or herself and his sibling in court, looking out for both of their best interests. An aunt, uncle, grandparent or parent may be a guardian ad litem, but the person best for the job may vary depending on the circumstances of the case.

If your child or a child you know has to go to court during a divorce or family law case, it's important that he or she has the right representation when necessary. You can learn more about being a guardian ad litem at our website; with the right support, you can be sure that the child in your care is represented fairly and has the support he or she needs in court.

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