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Our Wills Team

Elliot Ryan
Senior Associate
Junior Lawyer
Junior Lawyer

Guardianship and Administration Orders - SAT

The State Administrative Tribunal (SAT) is an independent statutory body that has the power to appoint a guardian or administrator to act in the best interests of a person with a decision-making disability. 

An application may be made to SAT to appoint a guardian (personal, lifestyle and treatment decisions) or administrator (financial and property decisions) where a person has a decision making disability or has become incapacitated. An application to appoint a guardian or attorney can be made in instances where a person is vulnerable or particularly at risk of being exploited or abused, whether physically or financially.

Guardianship and administration applications require medical evidence to be attached.

The SAT has the power to:

  • consider applications for the appointment of a guardian and/or administrator;
  • make orders appointing guardians and administrators;
  • reviews previous orders made by SAT;
  • consider applications intervening into Enduring Powers of Attorney, Enduring Powers of Guardianship and Advance Health Directives.

Most SAT applications will go straight to a final hearing and a final decision will be made. The SAT will give notice of the hearing to interested parties – generally immediate family members. These persons are entitled to attend the hearing and put forward their views.

The SAT will consider the application, any views expressed at the hearing and the medical reports submitted. The SAT must carefully consider each application based on the circumstances of the particular individual. In applications for guardianship and/or administration, the SAT will follow the following principles:

  • the best interests of the person;
  • as a starting point, assume that the person that is the subject of the application, has capacity to make their own decisions, unless proved otherwise;
  • appointing a guardian or administrator only when there is no other possible solution;
  • limiting the authority of a guardian or administrator to a specific function in which the person that is the subject of the application is experiencing problems so as to not restrict a person’s freedom to make decisions; and
  • where possible, respecting the wishes of the person who is the subject of the application.

In reaching a decision, the SAT will consider the following, where appropriate:

  • The impact of the person’s disability on their ability to manage their affairs;
  • Whether the person needs a guardian and/or administrator;
  • If appointing a guardian and/or administrator is in the best interest of the person;
  • Who is the most appropriate person to take on the role of guardian and/or administrator;
  • Whether there should be a limit to the powers of the guardian and/or administrator; and
  • How long the order will be in force before it should be reviewed.

Generally, a decision and reasons will be given at the conclusion of the hearing.

Please contact us for advice if you are considering making an application to SAT for a guardianship and/or administration order.