Any person interested in the welfare of a minor may petition the court for appointment of a Title 14 guardian. A guardian may be appointed when someone other than the parent wants to be appointed by the court to take over parental responsibilities, such as decisions regarding housing, medical care, and education.
The petitioner must serve legal notice of the petition for guardianship upon the person who has had the principal care and custody of the minor during the sixty days preceding the date of the petition: any living parent of the minor: and the minor who is at least 14 years of age. ARS 14-5207.
Title 14 Guardianships (JG) are not part of a dependency action, however, if a parent contests the guardianship it may lead to a dependency petition being filed. There is a filing fee for guardianship petitions which is paid to the Clerk of the Court at the time the petition is filed. The party may request a deferral of fees at the time the petition is filed. The Clerk of the Court will either grant or deny this request based upon the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
Relatives of the minor usually file petitions for guardianships. If the petitioner is not related to the minor by blood, the petitioner must be fingerprinted.