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Guardianship Program

Guardianship and Conservatorship Services
The Secretary of the South Dakota Department of Human Services may be appointed as a guardian, a conservator, or both, for adults with developmental disabilities under its care or to whom it is providing services or financial assistance, but only if there is no individual, nonprofit corporation, bank or trust company, or other public agency that is qualified and willing to serve. SDCL 29A-5-110.

Minimum Criteria for Application
The individual MUST:

  1. Be 18 years of age or older.
  2. Be a resident of South Dakota.
  3. Have a documented developmental disablity as defined in SDCL 27B-1-18.
  4. Be receiving services or financial assistance from the Department of Human Services as defined in SDCL 29A-5-110.
  5. Have no other individual or entity qualified and/or willing to serve.

Application Process

  1. Submit a completed Application.
  2. Submit proof that the individual does not have any family members, friends, advocate, or other qualified person willing to serve.
  3. Submit the individual's most recent Individual Support Plan, social, and medical history.
  4. Submit documentation of all least restrictive alternatives that have been tried.
  5. Submit evidence of areas the individual has been unable to make decisions in.
  6. Submit documentation describing any reason or circumstance leading to this request for services.
  7. Submit a copy of the most recent psychological evaluation and ICAP summary.

The decision to seek guardianship or conservatorship of another individual is never a decision to be made lightly. Guardianship and conservatorship places strict limits on the rights of the person for whom the appointment is made.

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