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Continue Office Of Public Guardianship

Concerning the office of public guardianship.
2023 Regular Session
Courts & Judicial
Bill Summary

Under existing law, the office of public guardianship (office) is authorized to operate in 3 judicial districts and is scheduled to repeal on June 30, 2024. The act extends the office indefinitely and requires the office to begin operating in additional judicial districts in 2025 and to operate in every judicial district in the state by December 31, 2030.

The act establishes a board of directors (board) to oversee the office. The board consists of 7 members: 3 members who are attorneys appointed by the chief justice of the Colorado supreme court and 4 non-attorney members appointed by the governor. The existing public guardianship commission that oversees the office is repealed, effective August 31, 2023.

The act permits the office to initiate petitions for guardianship and take any action on behalf of a client that a private guardian may take. The act requires the office to prioritize individuals with the greatest needs when the number of cases in which services have been requested exceeds the number of cases in which public guardianship can provide services.

The office of administrative services for independent agencies created in the judicial department in Senate Bill 23-228 in 2023 provides administrative and fiscal support to the office of public guardianship.

The office is required to employ guardians to provide guardianship services to the office's clients. A guardian must be certified as a guardian or become certified within 2 years after being hired by the office. The office shall provide training to guardians in specified subjects.

The act requires a court to waive filing fees for petitions for guardianship filed by the office in cases that involve an indigent and incapacitated person who is eligible for guardianship services from the office. A court is prohibited from requiring the office or a guardian employed by the office to post a bond as a condition for appointment as a guardian.

The act authorizes the office to spend any gifts, grants, or donations it receives without prior appropriation by the general assembly.

The act requires the state auditor to conduct, or cause to be conducted, a performance audit of the office during the period between July 1, 2027, and June 30, 2030.

APPROVED by Governor May 30, 2023

EFFECTIVE May 30, 2023

NOTE: Certain sections of the act are contingent on whether or not Senate Bill 23-228 becomes law. Senate Bill 23-228 was signed by the governor April 20, 2023.
(Note: This summary applies to this bill as enacted.)


Became Law


Bill Text

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details