Adult Guardianship Law
Decrease FontIncrease FontPrintPrint

Learn about the adult guardianship laws

In British Columbia, Adult Guardianship Legislation refers to the provincial laws that give every adult (19 years of age or older) a choice about how decisions can or will be made “by” or “for” them. This includes decisions related to: health care, personal care, admission to or continued residence in a care facility, financial, and legal and financial matters. 

Additionally, the Adult Guardianship Act ensures that vulnerable adults have the right to support, assistance or adult guardianship protection as a result of adult abuse or neglect.

What do adult guardianship laws provide in BC?

  • confirms the right of adults to self-determination, including the right to refuse health care on moral, religious, or other grounds
  • provides an opportunity for adults to decide in advance who will make decisions on their behalf should they become incapable of making decisions about health, personal care, financial, and legal matters in the future
  • ensures there are clear rules and guidelines for people making health-care decisions and other substitute decisions for others
  • reinforces the role of family and friends in providing adults with support and assistance and substitute decision-making
  • addresses the issues of abuse, neglect, and self-neglect of adults who cannot seek help on their own
  • provides a modernized guardianship system for adults who did not plan in advance for their incapacity and /or protects adults when the plans fail to provide the necessary safeguards against misuse


MoH     PCQO