How does it work? – Australian guardian to take over from elderly person in care
Australia’s oldest person has agreed to take charge of a family who are under guardianship for the first time after the state said they were over the legal age to do so.
The family of 81-year-old John McArthur, who is now 90, will be taken over by the Australian legal guardian, which is an authority which oversees the life of the elderly person and can order the death of an elderly person.
The announcement came as the government said it would seek to extend the period a person can receive a legal guardian.
The legal guardian must now complete the necessary paperwork and meet the guardian’s requirements before being able to become a legal adult.
“The legal guardian has an obligation to ensure that the person under guardianships meets the guardian duties and the conditions,” the government told the ABC.
“[The] legal guardian may not be the person in charge of the care, but they have a legal responsibility and that’s the responsibility of the person with a legal guardianship.”
The Australian government said the family will have to pay up to $5,000 to the family in order to become guardians.
John McArthur is now 92.
The elderly couple, who have lived in Queensland for more than 60 years, had been in care since 1974.
McArthur’s son, Richard McArthur of Sydney, said he was not surprised by the announcement, saying: “It’s been around for years and the [Australian] system was built on the assumption that people are over the age of consent.”
Richard McArthur said he would not be making any decisions until his father’s case was decided by a court.
Mr McArthur’s grandson, David McArthur from Sydney, who was also in the care system, said the McArthur family had “done well for the most part”.
“They’ve been through it and come out stronger,” he said.
David McArthur added: “I think [John] would like to be in a place where he can spend his days and be able to spend his time with his grandchildren and not worry about how old he is.”
In January, the Federal Government announced it would be changing the law to allow the legal guardian of an older person to become an adult.
The changes will apply to a person who is over the statutory age of 50, regardless of whether they are the legal guardians of a person over the same age.
This means an adult who is currently aged 74 could now become an authorised adult.