Does an order naming me guardian over a person supersede a general durable power of attorney, even where the powers granted in the guardianship appear to be less, as to financial matters, than the POA?
I have had a general Durable Power of Attorney since 1999 for a family member. Just recently, I asked (pro per) the court to name me as guardian over the person (but not the estate) because the ward was locking out caregivers and I needed the authority to overrule the ward. I did not ask for guardianship over the estate because that would have triggered a costly appraisal of the ward's real and personal property and, as I am named in the will as executor, it would have been redundant.
The court has a form for listing the rights the court is being asked to determine the proposed ward is incapable of. One of those was "the power to hold or convey property," which I checked off on the form along with other powers (such as paying and collecting debts, managing or running a business, initiating and defending lawsuits). The order, surprisingly to me, does not parallel the petition form. It does not make any mention of financial powers granted. I was not opposed at the hearing and, in fact, the ward's attorney was present and, after meeting with the ward that morning, supported the petition (actually, he wrote it for me and charged for it). The judge gave no indication that he was denying any of the powers requested and even added one I did not request, the power to operate a motor vehicle (which I did not request because the DMV had already revoked the license).
Recently, I asked a mutual fund company to recognize the power of attorney so that I could consolidate two of the ward's accounts. They refused stating that the guardianship supersedes the POA entirely and the guardianship should say I have power over the estate. I maintain that I don't need power over the estate as long as the ward survives and the POA is not superseded by the guardianship.
Am I correct or do I need to ask the court to redraft the order to include financial matters and, if so, do I need to request guardianship over the estate even though the ward is still alive?