(1)The general assembly finds and declares that:
(a)Due to incapacity, some adults in Colorado are unable to meet essential requirements for their health or personal care;
(b)Private guardianship is not an option for such an adult when:
(I)No responsible family members or friends are available and appropriate to serve as a guardian; and
(II)He or she lacks adequate resources to compensate a private guardian and pay the costs associated with an appointment proceeding;
(c)Volunteer and public service programs are currently inadequate to provide legal guardianship services to indigent and incapacitated adults in Colorado;
(d)Colorado courts struggle to address the needs of indigent and incapacitated adults who lack the resources to provide for their own guardianship needs; and
(e)Without a system providing legal guardianship services to indigent and incapacitated adults, the courts are left with few options for addressing these adults’ needs.
(2)In establishing the office of public guardianship, the general assembly intends:
(a)That the office will:
(I)Provide guardianship services to indigent and incapacitated adults who:
(A)Have no responsible family members or friends who are available and appropriate to serve as a guardian;
(B)Lack adequate resources to compensate a private guardian and pay the costs associated with an appointment proceeding; and
(C)Are not subject to a petition for appointment of guardian filed by a county adult protective services unit or otherwise authorized by section 26-3.1-104.
(3)In creating the office of public guardianship, it is also the intention of the general assembly to:
(a)Treat liberty and autonomy as paramount values for all state residents;
(b)Authorize public guardianship only to the extent necessary to provide for health or safety when the legal conditions for appointment of a guardian are met;
(c)Permit incapacitated adults to participate as fully as possible in all decisions that affect them;
(d)Assist incapacitated adults to regain or develop their capacities to the maximum extent possible;
(e)Promote the availability of guardianship services for adults who need them and for whom adequate services may otherwise be unavailable;
(f)Maintain and not alter or expand judicial authority to determine that any adult is incapacitated; and
(g)Maintain and not alter or expand any authority vested in the state department of human services and county departments of human or social services.
Section 13-94-102 — Legislative declaration,
https://leg.colorado.gov/sites/default/files/images/olls/crs2023-title-13.pdf (accessed Oct. 20, 2023).