Under Maryland law, when an individual is no longer able to take care of themselves, a guardian may be appointed by the court. This inability to care of one's self may come about due to illness, injury or mental disability. There are different types of guardians. A person can be a guardian of the property, which means that the disabled individual is unable to make decisions about their property. They might also be a guardian of the person, which means that an individual is unable to make decisions regarding their food, shelter or healthcare. Some situations allow the same person to be both, which means they have a generalized authority over the individual's care. A guardian is expected to always act in the best interest of the disabled person.
In legal cases concerning issues about access to a child, Maryland courts might assign a best interest attorney to the minor. Best interest attorneys have specific duties that are designed to advocate what most advantageous for the child's well-being.