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FINDLAW LEGAL DICTIONARY

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Guardian

guardian n

: one who has or is entitled or legally appointed to the care and management of the person or property of another compare committee , conservator , curator , receiver , tutor

guardian ad li·tem
[-ad-lī-təm, -Ä d-lē-tem]
: a guardian appointed by a court to represent in a particular lawsuit the interests of a minor, a person not yet born, or a person judged incompetent

guardian by nature
: natural guardian in this entry

natural guardian
: a guardian by natural relationship having custody of the person but not the property of a minor NOTE: Under common law the father is considered the natural guardian of a child until his death or incapacitation, whereupon the mother becomes the natural guardian. Many states have passed statutes giving both parents equal rights as guardians.

statutory guardian
: a guardian appointed by statutory authority

testamentary guardian
: a person named in a will to serve as a guardian
guard·ian·ship n



Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.