4. Prepare for your guardianship hearing

Before your guardianship hearing, you need to fill out more forms. Some forms you should file before your court date, others you can take with you to the court date.

How to prepare for your court date

  • File forms before the hearing

    If you haven't already, file: 

    • Duties of Guardian (form GC-248)
    • Proofs of Service for all the people you had served

    If the parents are cooperating with you, have them each complete a Parental Notification of Indian Status (form ICWA-020) if they haven't already. This form tells the court if the parent is a member or eligible to be a member of a federally recognized tribe specially recognized by the federal government.

  • Ask for court services (if needed)

    How to ask for an interpreter

    If you don't speak or understand English very well, you can ask for a free court interpreter for your court date. To ask for an interpreter, fill out and turn in a Request for Interpreter (Civil) (form INT-300) or a form the court gives you. In some courts, you can make your request online. Contact your court or ask a clerk when you file your forms to find out how to ask for an interpreter. 

    Get more information about asking for and working with an interpreter

    How to ask for an accommodation for a disability

    If you have a disability or limitation that prevents you from fully participating in court, you can ask for an accommodation if you need one. To ask for an accommodation, you can fill out a Disability Accommodation Request (form MC-410) and turn it in to your court's ADA Coordinator. You can also call the court or go in person to ask the ADA Coordinator. 

    To find the court's ADA Coordinator, check the court's website for a page titled "ADA" or ask the clerk.  

  • Prepare forms to bring to the hearing

    If you didn't give these forms to the clerk already, also take:

    Order Appointing Guardian or Extending Guardianship of the Person (form GC-240). You fill out only the caption—the top box—on this form. If the judge agrees to appoint you as the child's guardian, they will sign the order.

    Letters of Guardianship (form GC-250). Fill out the caption—the top box—on this form. The clerk will sign and stamp it if the judge appoints you as guardian.

  • Write out what you plan to say or who to bring with you

    The judge may have questions for you at the hearing, like why you want to be a guardian, and why you think it is best for the child to be in your custody. Be prepared with notes and any paperwork you want to talk about.

    illustration of a clipboard with a checklist

     It can help to have a list of the main points you want to say. If you forget or get nervous in court, you can take a moment to review your list.


    If there is someone who has seen or heard anything that supports why you should be a guardian, you can ask them to come to the hearing. They can be a witness for you.

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