Jeff Marshall is a board certified specialist in Family Law

No-conflict divorce turned bad over guardianship

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In May 2013, Florida resident, Cindy Hausburg, who is now 59, filed for divorce from her husband. After having already been separated for two years, both Hausburg and her former husband expected the process to be rather smooth regarding their friendly platonic relationship. However, over the next two years, Hausburg found herself stripped of almost all of her rights after obtaining a legal guardian, who she believed would simply be helping her manage her finances on her own.

At present, she is struggling to make ends meet to pay for guardian and attorney bills that have amounted to around $125,000.

When someone is in a position where they are declared unable to make their own legal decisions, usually due to some sort of mental impairment, they are sometimes given a court appointed legal guardian. Nonetheless, Hausburg’s case, which began voluntarily and then became involuntary, was highly unusual according to legal experts – including her ex-husband.

Although the guardianship statute is intended to protect those who are incapacitated from being taken advantage of legally, many argue that the system actually makes this more likely. A lot of the secrecy around legal guardianship makes it easy for malicious attorneys or guardians to take advantage of the individual.

Cindy Hausburg lamented, “I was put on the bidding block. They saw my property, and there’s only $163,000 left of my marital assets. They weren’t the least bit interested in me at all.”

Divorce can be complicated and stressful, but the attorneys at Marshall & Taylor PLLC can help you navigate the legal process. Speak with a qualified member of our legal team today by calling our North Carolina offices at (919) 833-1040.