SENATE BILL NO. 171
AN ACT TO AMEND CHAPTER 39 OF TITLE 12, DELAWARE CODE, TO PROVIDE IN LIMITED CIRCUMSTANCES FOR THE APPOINTMENT BY THE COURT OF CHANCERY OF AN INTERIM GUARDIAN WHEN AN IMMINENT THREAT OF SERIOUS PHYSICAL HARM IS PRESENT.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:
Amend Chapter 39, Title 12, Delaware Code, by adding the following new Section to be designated as §3915 to read as follows:
§3915. Emergency Guardianships
(a) Whenever the Court of Chancery finds, based upon a verified petition,
affidavit or other evidentiary materials, that:
(1) a named individual is unable properly to care for himself or make
decisions relating to his care and in consequence thereof is in danger of substantially endangering his health,
(1) such danger threatens imminent serious physical harm to such person, and
(1) such harm may occur before a hearing for the appointment of a guardian pursuant to Section 3914 of this Title may be held,
the Court may forthwith appoint an interim guardian of the person of such individual, provided that at the time of such interim appointment the Court fixes a date, no later than 30 days from the date of such appointment, for a hearing pursuant to Section 3914(b). A guardian appointed pursuant to the emergency provisions of this section shall, pending the hearing contemplated by Section 3914(b), possess all of the powers of guardian of the person appointed pursuant to Section 3914 and shall be governed in all respects by the applicable provisions of Section 3914 of this Chapter.
(b) Nothing in this section shall be construed to mean an adult is infirm or
incapacitated or in need of a guardian for the sole reason he relies upon, or is being furnished with, treatment by spiritual means through prayer alone in accordance with the tenets and practices of a recognized church or religious denomination, nor shall anything in this section be construed to authorize or require any medical care of treatment over the implied or express objections of said person.
(c) Whenever a Judge of the Court of Chancery is unavailable, any Judge of the Superior Court may exercise the powers conferred by subsection (a) of this Section."
Approved July 8, 1987