Title 8. Family/Children’s Code
Chapter 6. Guardianship
Title 8. Family/Children’s Code, Chapter 6. Guardianship
Article I – General Provisions
Article II – Duties of Guardian
Article III – Appointment of Guardians
Article IV – Forms of Guardianship
Article V – Guardianship Proceedings
Article VI – Miscellaneous
SECTION 101. POLICY
It is the policy of the Pit River Tribe that guardianship is an acceptable and sometimes preferable placement instead of adoption or long-term foster care.
SECTION 102. AUTHORITY
(A) The Pit River Tribal Children’s Court shall have authority, whenever it appears necessary or convenient, to appoint guardians for the persons and/or estates, or for the purpose of actual or contemplated litigation (guardian ad litem) of either minors or persons incompetent by reason of physical or mental sickness or deficiency, advanced age, or chronic use of drugs or alcohol.
(B) The Pit River Tribal Children’s Court shall have authority to appoint guardians when the person for whom the guardianship is sought is a member of the Tribe or the child of a member of the Tribe, whether or not he lives on the Reservation.
(C) The Children’s Court may, in its discretion, refer matters concerning the guardianship of a minor to the Tribal Juvenile Court.
SECTION 103. WHO MAY SERVE AS GUARDIAN
Any adult person 21 years of age or older and subject to the jurisdiction of the Pit River Tribal Court, may serve as a guardian. Preference shall be given to relatives of the minor or incompetent in order of their closeness of relationship and some preference shall also be given to a person with whom a person with whom the minor or incompetent is living at the time of guardianship hearing. Preference shall be given to the person preferred to act as his guardian by a minor or incompetent over 14 years of age, but in all cases, the Court shall determine the best interests of the minor or incompetent in selecting a guardian.
SECTION 201. POWERS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF GUARDIAN
(A) Except as otherwise specifically ordered or limited by the Court:
(1) A general guardian or guardian of the person of a minor or incompetent shall have the right to take or provide for the custody of the person of the minor or incompetent and shall be required to care for the health, safety and welfare of such minor or incompetent and provide for their education and medical care as needed or appropriate.
(2) A general guardian or guardian of the estate or property of a minor or incompetent shall have authority to invest, manage and dispose of the property of the minor or incompetent in a prudent and reasonable manner and expend such portions of the estate, income and then principle, as he shall deem reasonably necessary for the support, care, including medical care, and education of the minor or incompetent given the size and nature of the estate and the station in life and needs of the minor or incompetent.
(3) A guardian ad litem shall have power and authority to represent a minor or incompetent’s best interests in actual, threatened or contemplated litigation or other proceedings of a legal nature (other than of a criminal nature and/or under the Juvenile Code), and to employ counsel, and settle or compromise suit or claims, subject to the approval of the Court.
(B) A guardian of any kind may petition the Court for authority to do any act about which he is uncertain, and the Court may grant such authority, after such notice and hearing, if any, as the Court may direct if such appears to be consistent with the best interests of the minor or incompetent.
(C) A guardian or any kind shall stand in a fiduciary relationship to the minor or incompetent ward; shall exercise a high degree of care in managing the estate of his ward; shall derive no personal benefit of any kind from his management of his estate of his ward; and shall be civilly liable to said ward for any losses to the estate attributable to a breach of these duties. Action to enforce such liability may be brought by the ward or a subsequently appointed guardian on behalf of the ward within two years after the appointment of a new guardian or the removal of the incompetency or the arriving at the age of majority.
SECTION 202. SECURITY FOR FAITHFUL PERFORMANCE OF DUTIES
The Court may, but need not, require a guardian to provide security in the form of a bond or otherwise to assure the faithful performance of the guardian’s duties. Any surety of any such security will be deemed to have consented to the jurisdiction of the Pit River Tribal Court for the purposes of action against such security.
SECTION 203. OATH; LETTERS OF GUARDIANSHIP
(A) The guardian appointed by the Court shall be required to take an oath, the form of which to be prescribed by the Court, to the effect that he will faithfully perform his duties as guardian.
(B) Upon taking the oath and filing with the Court such security, if any, as may have been required, the guardian shall be issued letters of Guardianship, issued by the Clerk under the seal of the Court, as evidence of his appointment. Any limitations in the authority of the guardian shall be set forth on the Letters so issued.
SECTION 204. INVENTORY AND APPOINTMENT
(A) Within 45 days after the appointment of a general guardian or a guardian of property or estate of a minor or incompetent, the guardian shall prepare and submit to the Court an inventory and appointment of the estate.
(B) The appraisement shall be made by three disinterested persons who shall certify under oath to their appraisement and may receive reasonable compensation for their services.
(C) No appraisement shall be required of items of obvious, readily ascertainable value; e.g. bank account assets, or where the value of the estate is reasonably believed by the guardian to be less than $1,000.00. If no appraisement is required, the guardian shall certify under oath to the obvious or estimated value of the assets not appraised.
SECTION 205. COMPENSATION
The Court may order that the Court disburse monthly reimbursement payments to the person or agency to whom custody is granted under this code, provided sufficient funds have been appropriated by the Tribal Council. Said disbursements must be used by the person or agency with custody of the child for the sole purpose of covering expenses incurred in the care and custody of said child and shall not be used for any other purpose. The use of said funds for any purpose other than that described in this section shall subject said person or agency to contempt of Court and to any criminal and civil penalties or remedies provided by the Tribal code.
SECTION 301. HOW GUARDIANS ARE APPOINTED
(A) By will. The last surviving parent or spouse of a minor or mental incompetent may designate in a will the guardian for the minor or mental incompetent. Upon determination by the Court that the will is valid, and that the person designated is willing to accept the responsibilities of guardianship, the Court shall appoint the person designated; provided that for good cause shown, the Court may decline to appoint the person designated.
(B) By Court appointment. Where a minor or mental incompetent is in need of a guardian, and no guardian is appointed pursuant to a valid will, the Court may appoint a guardian, to promote the best interests of the minor or mental incompetent.
(C) Hearing. In each case where a guardian is to be appointed, either by will, or by Court appointment, a hearing shall be held following notice to all interested parties.
SECTION 302. APPOINTMENT OF GUARDIAN
(A) Upon petition by any person with a legitimate interest in the welfare of the child, excluding the child welfare coordinator, the Children’s Court may appoint a guardian for a child who is without both parents or whose parents are unavailable for reason of incarceration or commitment or otherwise unable to care for the child. Except when the petitioner is a person with an interest in the child, the decision to allow a person to petition for the appointment of a guardian shall be in the Court’s discretion. The Court may impose any restriction or limitation on the powers of a guardian, or condition its appointment on the guardian’s performance of specified duties, not inconsistent with this Chapter, it finds will help protect the child’s interest.
(B) A guardian may be appointed to exercise custody and the power to make decisions of importance to the child’s health, education, support and welfare. Such a guardian shall be known as a “guardian of the child.” A guardian of the child may not manage the financial interests of the child.
(C) A guardian may be appointed to conserve the assets, income, and financial interests of a child, subject to a duty of disclosure and reporting to the Children’s Court regarding such matters no less than annually. Any such order shall fix a date or dates for the filing of such reports and may require the posting of a bond or other conditions to protect the child’s interests. Such a guardian shall be known as a “guardian of the child’s estate.” A guardian of the child may be guardian of the child’s estate or separate guardians may be appointed.
SECTION 303. APPOINTMENT OF GUARDIAN AD LITEM FOR MINOR OR INCOMPETENT PARENT
(A) Whenever, with respect to any petition filed under this Ordinance, it appears that either parent of the child is a minor or incompetent, the Court shall appoint a Guardian Ad Litem for such parent. The Guardian Ad Litem shall be an attorney authorized to practice law in Tribal Court.
(B) The Guardian Ad Litem shall be allowed reasonable compensation which shall be assessed against the petitioner. If the Court finds that the petitioner is unable to pay, the reasonable compensation shall be paid by Court, which may seek reimbursement of such fees according to Tribal law.
SECTION 304. CHILD MAY NOMINATE GUARDIAN
(A) If a child is under the age of fourteen (14) years, the Court may nominate or appoint their guardian. If the child is fourteen (14) years of age or older, the child may nominate their own guardian who, if approved by the Court, must be appointed accordingly.
(B) If the guardian nominated by the child is not approved by the Court, or if the child resides outside of the reservation, or if, after being duly cited by the Court, the child neglects for ten (10) days to nominate a suitable person, the Court may nominate and appoint the guardian in the same manner as if the child were under the age of fourteen (14) years.
(C) When a guardian has been appointed by the Court for a child under the age of fourteen(14) years, the child, at any time after the child attains that age, may nominate their own guardian, subject to the approval of the Court. A guardian appointed may as specified by the Court have the custody and care of the education of the child and the care and management of their property until such child arrives at the age of eighteen (18) marries, is emancipated by the Court, or until the guardian is legally discharged, provided, however, that said guardian shall not have the authority, without express written consent of the Court, to dispose of any real or personal property of the child in any manner, including, but not limited to, the child’s Individual Indian Money Account and the child’s per capita distribution held for the child’s benefit in the minor’s trust fund. Said guardian shall also have the authority to consent to the medical care and treatment of the child.
SECTION 401. TYPES OF GUARDIANSHIP
The types of guardianship shall include guardianship of property and/or guardianship of the person. Guardianship of the person shall include both temporary guardianship and permanent guardianship.
SECTION 402. PERMANENT GUARDIANSHIP
The Court may appoint a permanent guardian for the child under such terms and conditions as the Court sets forth in the written order. Permanent guardianship provides for permanent custody of a child to someone other than the parent(s), although there is no termination of the parental rights of the parents. There shall be a presumption of continued permanent guardianship in order to provide stability for the child. Permanent guardianship shall only be terminated based upon the unsuitability of the permanent guardian(s) rather than the competency or suitability of the parent(s). The parent(s) and the child’s extended family shall be granted liberal visitation rights unless deemed inappropriate by the Court.
SECTION 403. TEMPORARY GUARDIANSHIP
The Court may appoint a temporary guardian under such terms and conditions as the Court sets forth in the written order. A temporary guardianship may be terminated if the Court determines that it is in the best interest of the child to change custody from the temporary guardian to a new guardian or to return the child to the parent, guardian or custodian. The parent(s) and the child’s extended family shall be granted liberal visitation rights unless deemed inappropriate by the Court.
SECTION 404. GUARDIANSHIP OF PROPERTY
The Court may appoint a guardian of the property of a child or incompetent person under such terms and conditions as the Court sets forth in the written order. The guardianship may cover all property until the child reaches eighteen (18) years of age or until the incompetent person becomes competent or it may be limited to only specific property or a specific legal action as set forth in the written order. A temporary or permanent guardianship of the person may also include guardianship of the child’s property if set forth in the written order.
SECTION 405. GUARDIANSHIP OF TRUST PROPERTY
The Court is hereby authorized to appoint a Guardian of the trust estate of minors or incompetents using the procedures and safeguards outlined herein for the purpose of conveying or consenting to the conveyance of an interest in trust property owned by such minor or incompetent if it appears that the price to be paid is reasonable and adequate and that such sale is in the best interests of said minor or incompetent. All actions taken by such guardian consenting to or conveying trust property shall be subject to the approval of the Superintendent.
SECTION 406. TEMPORARY GUARDIANSHIP AND CUSTODY
The Court shall have the power to entertain and grant or deny petitions for temporary guardianship and custody when it determines it to be in the best interest of the child, incompetent or non-competent person involved; provided, that full notice and opportunity to be heard be given to all parties with ten (10) days thereafter, and further provided that no guardian so appointed sell, dispose of, convey or otherwise alienate title to or interest in the ward’s property during such temporary period.
SECTION 407. MANAGEMENT OF PROPERTY
(A) In the event that any guardian shall receive any money or funds of any child or incompetent person during their term of office as guardian, before taking and receiving into custody such money or funds, the Court must require of such person a bond with sufficient surety to be approved by the Court and in such sum as the Court shall order, conditioned that the guardian will faithfully execute the duties of their trust, and the following conditions shall form the part of such bond without being expressed therein:
(1) To make an inventory of all the estate of the ward that comes into their possession or knowledge and to return the same within such time as the Court may order, and;
(2) To dispose of and manage the estate according to law and for the best interests of the ward, and faithfully to discharge their trust in relation thereto, and also in relation to the care, custody and education of the ward, and;
(3) To render an account on oath of the property, estate and money of the ward in their hand and all the proceeds or interests derived therefore, and of the management and disposition of the same, within there (3) months after their appointment, and at such other times as the Court directs, and at the expiration of their trust, to settle their accounts with the Court or judge or with the ward if the ward is of full age, or their legal representative, and to pay over and deliver all the estate, movies and effects remaining in their hands, or due from them on such settlement to the person who is legally entitled thereto.
(B) The funds of any child or incompetent must be used by their guardian solely for the support and education of such child and for the support of such incompetent, and shall be expended by the guardian in a reasonable manner according to the circumstances and station in life of such ward, and in such manner as can reasonably be afforded according to the income and estate of said ward.
(C) If determined to be appropriate by the Court, the written order may set forth that the child’s property may not be used for the child’s care, but rather to be managed for the child until the child reaches the age of eighteen (18) or is emancipated by the Court.
SECTION 408. DISBURSEMENT OF PER CAPITA PAYMENTS
(A) A parent or guardian of the estate of a minor or incompetent person may petition the Tribal Court for the authority to expend or distribute an appropriate portion or all of the income or principal of the per capita payment of the ward being held for the benefit of that ward in accordance with the Tribal Gaming Revenue Allocation Plan for the support, maintenance, education, general use and benefit of the ward and the ward’s dependents, in the manner, at the time or times and to the extent that the guardian, in an exercise of a reasonable discretion, deems suitable and proper, with or without regard to any other funds, income or property which may be available for that purpose.
(B) In considering any petition filed under this Chapter, the Court shall give due regard to:
(1) The size of the ward’s estate;
(2) The probable duration of any guardianship and the likelihood that the ward, at some future time, may be fully able to manage his or her affairs and the estate which has been conserved for him or her; and
(3) The accustomed standard of living of the ward and members of the ward’s household;
(4) Recommendations relating to the appropriate standard of support, education and benefit for the ward made by a parent or guardian of the person, if any;
(5) The policy and requirements of the Gaming Revenue Allocation Plan as enunciated therein.
(D) The Tribal Court shall establish such rules of procedure as may be necessary to administer this Section.
SECTION 501. PETITION
(A) Guardianship proceedings shall be initiated by the filing of a petition by a relative or other person on behalf of the minor or incompetent, or by a minor himself if over 14 years of age. The Court may initiate proceedings to appoint a guardian if such appointment reasonably appears necessary and no other person has initiated such proceedings.
(B) Guardianship Petition. The petition for guardianship may be filed by any of the following persons:
(1) Either or both parents, including a parent who is a minor;
(2) The Tribal Prosecutor on behalf of the Tribe;
(3) Any person possessing a legitimate interest in the matter.
(C) The petition for guardianship shall include the following information:
(1) The name, sex, date and place of birth, present address and tribal affiliation of the child who is the proposed ward;
(2) The name and address of the petitioner, and the nature of the relationship between the petitioner and the child;
(3) The names, dates of birth, address, tribal affiliation of the child’s parents;
(4) The name of the person or agency of the proposed guardian;
(5) If the parent of the child is a minor, the names and addresses of the parents or guardian of the minor;
(6) The name and address of the person or agency having legal or temporary custody of the child;
(7) The facts upon which the guardianship is sought, the effects of the guardianship and the basis for the Court’s jurisdiction; and
(8) A statement describing the property owned, possessed, or in which the child has an interest and the value of such property or property interest.
(D) If the information required under subdivisions (2), (3) and (7) of subsection (C) of this Section is not stated, the petition shall be dismissed. If any of the other facts required hereunder are not known or cannot be ascertained by the petitioner, the petitioner shall so state in the petition. The petitioner shall sign and date the petition, and attest to the veracity of the information contained therein.
SECTION 502. NOTICE
(A) Notice of the hearing and a copy of the petition, certified by the petitioner or his attorney or the Court Clerk, shall be served at least ten days before the date of the hearing by personal service on the persons enumerated in subsection b. of this Section. If personal service cannot be reasonably effected or the address of any person is unknown, a Judge or Court Clerk shall order notice to be given by registered or certified mail, return receipt requested, or by publication at least ten days before the date of the hearing in a newspaper of general circulation in the place of the last-known address of the person to be notified, whether within or without California, or if no such address is known, in a newspaper of general circulation in the region where the Court is located.
(B) The Court shall also cause a notice of the hearing to be given to the parents of the minor child, including any parent of a minor who is himself a parent, the guardian or any other person whom the Court deems appropriate, the Director of Indian Child Welfare, and to the child if he is over the age of fourteen years. The notice shall state that the party for whom a guardianship is being sought has the right to be represented by counsel.
(C) Notice and appearance may be waived by a parent in writing before the Court, provided that such parent has been apprised by the Court of the meaning and consequences of the guardianship action. The parent who has executed such a waiver shall not be required to appear at the subsequent hearing. Where the parent is a minor, the waiver shall be effective only upon approval by the Court.
SECTION 503. GUARDIANSHIP REPORT
(A) Upon the filing of a guardianship petition, the Court shall immediately request that the social services department or other qualified agency conduct a guardianship report on the proposed guardian and report on the proposed ward. The guardianship report shall contain all pertinent information necessary to assist the Court in determining the best interest of the proposed ward.
(B) No determination can be made on a petition for guardianship until the report has been completed and submitted to an considered by the Court. The guardianship report shall be submitted to the Court no later than ten (10) days before the hearing. The Court may order additional reports as it deems necessary.
SECTION 504. CONSENT TO GUARDIANSHIP
(A) If a petition indicates that either or both parents consent to the guardianship, or if any time following the filing of a petition and before the entry of a final decree, a parent consents to the guardianship, each consenting parent shall acknowledge such consent in writing on a form promulgated by the Chief Judge, before the Court, evidencing to the satisfaction of the Court that the parent has voluntarily and knowingly consented to the guardianship and that the terms and consequences of such consent are understood by the parent. The Court shall also certify that either the parent or guardian fully understood the explanation in English or that it was interpreted into a language that the parent or guardian or custodian understood.
(B) No voluntary consent to guardianship by a mother shall be executed prior to or within ten days after the birth of the child. A minor who is a parent shall have the right to consent to the guardianship and such consent shall not be voidable by reason of such minority.
(C) In any voluntary proceeding the consent of the parent may be withdrawn for any reason at any time prior to the entry of a final decree, and where the child has been placed out of the family, the child shall be returned to the parent unless the Court finds good cause to the contrary not to return the child.
SECTION 505. HEARING
(A) At the hearing held on the petition for the guardianship, any party to whom notice was given shall have the right to appear and be heard with respect to the petition. If the parent who is consenting to the guardianship appears at the hearing, the Court shall explain to the parent the meaning and consequences of the guardianship action.
(B) Upon finding at the hearing or at any time during the pendency of the petition that reasonable cause exists to warrant an examination, the Court, on its own motion or on motion of any party, may order the child to be examined by a physician, psychiatrist, or licensed clinical psychologist appointed by the Court. The Court may also order an examination of a parent or guardian whose competency or ability to care for a child before the Court is at issue. The expenses of any examination if ordered by the Court shall be paid by the petitioner, or if ordered on motion by a party, shall be paid for by that party unless such party or petitioner is unable to pay, in which case, they shall be paid by the Court. The Court may consider the results of the examination in ruling on the merits of the petition.
(C) The Court may, in any contested case, request the Indian Child Welfare Department to make an investigation and written report to the Court within forty-five (45) days from receipt of such request. The report shall indicate the physical, mental and emotional health of the child and shall contain such facts as may be relevant to determine whether the proposed guardianship will be in the best interests of the child, including the physical, mental and social and financial condition of the proposed guardian, and any factors which the agency deems relevant to determine whether the proposed guardianship will be in the best interests of the child.
(D) If such a report is requested, the Court shall schedule a hearing not more than thirty (30) days from the date the expiration of the forty-five (45) day time period or receipt of the report, whichever is earlier. The Court shall give reasonable notice of the investigation hearing to all parties to the first hearing.
(E) The report shall be admissible in evidence, subject to the right of any interested party to require that the person making it appear as a witness and subject himself to examination.
(F) At either the investigation hearing or the first hearing, if no investigation and report has been requested, the Court may approve the petition for guardianship and may appoint a guardian of the person of the child, if it finds by a preponderance of the evidence, including the testimony of a qualified expert witness, that the guardianship is in the best interests of the child, and, with respect to any consenting adult that such consent was voluntarily and knowingly given.
(G) If the Court denies a petition for guardianship, with or without consent, it may refer the matter to the Indian Child Welfare Department to assess the needs of the child, the care the child is receiving, and a remediation plan for the parent.
SECTION 506. FINDINGS AND ORDERS
(A) The Court shall make written findings in determining whether to appoint a guardian based on a consideration of:
(1) The timeliness, nature and extent of services offered or provided to the child or parent by any tribal or state agency to facilitate the preservation of the family;
(2) The terms of any applicable Court order and the extent to which the parties have fulfilled their obligations thereunder;
(3) The feelings and emotional ties of the child with respect to his parents, the proposed guardian, or any person who has provided physical care or custody to the child during the preceding year and with whom the child has developed significant emotional ties;
(4) The age of the child;
(5) The efforts the parent has made to make it in the best interests of the child to be reunited with the parent; and
(6) The extent to which the parent may have been prevented from maintaining a meaningful relationship with the child.
(B) Whenever the Court finds that a guardian should be appointed, the Court shall appoint either a temporary or permanent guardian over the person of the child under such terms and conditions as the Court sets forth in the written order. An appointment of a guardianship shall not terminate the parental rights of the parents, however, the guardian shall have the responsibility for the care, custody and education of the child until she attains the age of eighteen (18) years, marries, is emancipated by the Court, or until the guardian is legally discharged. The guardian shall also have the authority to consent to the medical care and treatment of the child. The Court may grant visitation rights to the parents and the child’s extended family under the terms and conditions as the Court deems to be in the best interests of the child. The guardian shall not have the authority, without the express written consent of the Court, to use or dispose of any real or personal property of the child in any manner.
(C) Any support obligation existing prior to the effective date of the Court’s order shall not be severed or terminated.
SECTION 507. INCOMPETENT PERSONS
(A) In case of incompetent persons, if after a full hearing and examination upon such petition, and upon further proof by the certificate of a qualified physician showing that any person is incompetent as defined in this Code, it appears to the Court that the person in question is not capable of taking care of themselves and of managing their property, such Court must appoint a guardian of the person and estate within the powers and duties specified in this chapter.
(B) Every guardian of an incompetent person appointed as provided herein has the care and custody of the person of their ward and the management of their estate until such guardian is legally discharged; the guardian must give bond to such ward in like manner and with like conditions as before specified with respect to the guardianship of a child.
(C) A person who has been declared insane or incompetent or the guardian, or any relative of such person within the third degree or any friend, may apply by petition to the Court in which they were declared insane, to have the fact of their restoration to capacity judicially determined. The petition shall be verified and shall state that such person is then sane or competent. The Court shall require notice to be given of a hearing upon said petition at some date after said petition has been filed; and at the hearing upon said petition, witnesses shall be examined and a determination made by the court as to whether the petition should be granted and the insane or incompetent person be declared of sound mind and capable of taking care of themselves and their property, their restoration to capacity shall be adjudged and the guardianship of such person, if such person shall not be a child, shall cease.
SECTION 601. TERMINATION OF GUARDIANSHIP
(A) A temporary guardianship may be terminated upon a determination that it is in the best interests of the child to change custody from the guardian to a new guardian or to return the child to the child’s parent.
(B) A permanent guardianship shall only be terminated upon a determination of the unsuitability of the permanent guardian rather than the competency or suitability of the parents.
(C) Upon motion of any person, or the Tribe, the Court may provide notice and a hearing on whether to terminate a guardianship. Grounds for termination shall include, but not be limited to, personal use by the guardian of the assets of the ward, failure to provide a reasonable level of care for the ward, or the marriage of a minor ward. No termination of the guardianship of a minor or incompetent person shall dive rise, in any way, to any right to or distribution of that minor or incompetent person’s per capita payment in any way other than as otherwise permitted pursuant to the Pit River Tribal Law and Order Code.
(D) Guardianship, including for guardians of the property the control over the ward’s assets, shall terminate automatically upon a minor reaching age 18, or upon a mental incompetent being adjudged by the Court to have regained legal capacity.
SECTION 602. REVIEW OF GUARDIANSHIP
The status of all children who have been placed with a guardian pursuant to this Ordinance shall be reviewed by the Court at least once a year, or as otherwise directed by the Court. Whenever a guardian of the child’s property has been appointed, the guardian shall submit a yearly accounting regarding the guardian’s use of the child’s property to the Court for review and approval.
SECTION 603. GUARDIANSHIP RECORDS
The Clerk shall keep a separate, permanent file for each guardianship proceeding and shall file all papers relevant thereto, including petitions, notices, orders for hearings, etc. Any guardian duly appointed shall be entitled to receive, without charge, three certified copies of the Letters of Guardianship. Certified copies of filed papers shall be otherwise available at a fee per copy to be established by the Clerk of Courts.