STC Guardianship Assistance: A first-hand account from Jeff and Jenn Schumacher

In 2018, as our son, Justin—then 16 years old—was nearing the age of becoming a consenting adult, we were faced with two major decisions; First, determining that he was going to need us to be his long-term guardians, and second, trying to understand the maze of the guardianship process. After years of proudly managing our journey with little outside help, we then determined that we needed to reach out for some help. We did extensive research before we came across Southern Tier Connect and their care manager program. We reached out and were immediately greeted by their friendly staff who made arrangements to meet us and soon enough, we were on-site, completing the necessary steps to become enrolled.
Since that time, we have been delighted by the resources made available to our family. Of course, once enrolled, we began working with Melissa Rathbun (Justin’s care manager) right away on preparing for guardianship. She helped us get the necessary referrals and made sure we knew whom to reach out to and what to expect when the time was right.

Fast forward to 2020, Justin has turned 18, and we hired a lawyer to help us through the legal process (as we had anticipated). One of the first things he did was send us a plethora of materials that we needed to fill out, affidavits to get, and other odds and ends. Much to our delight, we already had most of the paperwork needed thanks to Southern Tier Connect. We aren’t quite complete with the process, but without the help of Melissa at Southern Tier Connect we wouldn’t be nearly as far as we are now in the process. Kudos to such a caring organization!

More on Guardianship

What is guardianship? Why is it important? Who can apply? Where do I begin?

STC held a Special Webinar on December 16 featuring the Honorable Judge David Guy, who has provided assistance with over 500 guardianship cases. A guardian is typically a family member, close friend, or advocate appointed by the court to make decisions for a loved one regarding health care, personal affairs, and financial matters. Becoming a guardian is a serious responsibility.

If you have questions about guardianship for your loved one, but missed the webinar—no worries! You can watch it on our website at any time.