Representing Florida’s Abused, Neglected, and Abandoned Children in the Courtroom and the Community.
What We Do
The Florida Statewide Guardian ad Litem Office represents abused, abandoned and neglected children in the courtroom and the community. Through the collaboration of a multi-disciplinary team that includes a Guardian ad Litem Attorney, child welfare professional, and hopefully a trained volunteer, our team provides quality legal representation for the best interests of abused, neglected, and abandoned children while assisting the child in expressing their needs and wishes. Our unique approach allows us to support the whole child, addressing their physical, educational, mental, emotional, social, and legal needs.
The Statewide Guardian ad Litem Office is a Guardianship type of legal representation. In Florida, we recognize that children cannot make decisions for themselves that involve their health and safety. Guardians ad Litem must provide all information to the judge about the child and advocate for what is in the child’s best interest.
In Florida, according to state statute, a Guardian ad Litem is a certified volunteer, staff attorney, contract attorney, certified pro bono attorney, court-appointed attorney, Guardian ad Litem Office staff, or a responsible adult who is appointed by the court to represent the best interests of a child in a proceeding as provided for by law, including, but not limited to, Chapter 39 of the Florida State Statutes, who is a party to any judicial proceeding as a representative of the child, and who serves until discharged by the court.
Guardians ad Litem become people our children can trust, helping us be their voice. As a team together, we provide powerful, effective, high-quality advocacy with one goal: that every child finds a safe, loving, permanent home where they can thrive.
You can be a part of Florida’s award-winning, state-funded child advocacy organization and make a difference in a child’s life. Learn more about how you can become a child advocate or support the Florida Guardian ad Litem Foundation, which provides support and additional resources for Florida Guardian ad Litem and the families we serve.
To provide the most vulnerable children in Florida with an adult from their community who will be a consistent, positive presence in the child’s life as part of a multi-disciplinary team that includes an attorney, child welfare professional and hopefully a community volunteer providing the highest quality community advocacy and legal representation to protect each child’s legal interests. To provide dependency judges with thorough and accurate information regarding the children under the court’s jurisdiction.