The court hearing the guardian proceeding requests that Department of Human Services (DHS) complete the background study.
A background study consent form needs to be completed and signed by the background study subject and sent to DHS via US Mail. DHS is unable to accept forms that are faxed or emailed. The court will either provide you with the consent form or you can find a fillable PDF form online. The consent form must be complete, legible, and signed or the form may be returned which will result in a delay of processing the background study.
In most cases, the background study needs to be completed before the individual can be appointed or re-appointed guardian/conservator by the court. In certain circumstances, if the court determines that it would be in the best interests of the ward or protected person to appoint the guardian or conservator before the background study can be completed, it can do so pending the results of the study, however the study must then be completed no later than 30 days after appointment.
If the proposed guardian or conservator has not lived outside of Minnesota in the past ten years, the fee for processing your study is $50 unless information from the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) indicates you are a multistate offender, or your offender status on the BCA record is "not determined" or blank. In that case, DHS will notify the subject in writing and requires that he or she submit a set of classifiable fingerprints in order to complete a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) record search. An additional $30 fee will be required unless the case has been approved by the court to proceed in forma pauperis.
If the proposed guardian or conservator has lived outside of Minnesota for any period of time during the past ten years (including wintering), the fee for processing the background study is $130. The subject must submit a set of classifiable fingerprints with the background study consent form and fee. This fee includes the $30 fee for processing the fingerprints for the FBI check.
If the case has been approved by the court to proceed in forma pauperis, the fee is paid by the county probate court hearing the case. For more information about petitioning the court to proceed in forma pauperis, contact the county probate court directly.
If you are a conservator of the estate, the fee is paid by the estate.
If you need assistance determining how your background study fee will be paid, you may want to consult an attorney.
There are two situations in which it is required to submit a set of classifiable fingerprints in order to conduct a check of records maintained by the FBI:
A background study always includes a name and date of birth check of:
Note: A search of these professional licensing boards is also conducted in any other state in which you have resided in the past ten years.
A check of records maintained by the FBI will be required if the proposed guardian or conservator has lived outside of Minnesota for any period of time during the past ten years. The individual must submit a set of classifiable fingerprints at the time of submitting the background study consent form and fee (if applicable).
A check of records maintained by the FBI will also be required if the BCA record belonging to the proposed guardian or conservator indicates an offender status of multistate, not determined or is blank. In the event that an FBI check is necessary as a result of information from the BCA, the subject will receive a notice in writing from DHS stating that he or she is required to submit a set of classifiable fingerprints, the reason why, instructions on how to do so and what will happen if he or she fails to submit fingerprints.
Once the study is completed, either a clearance notice or the results of the study will be sent to the county probate court that is listed at the top of the consent form. An official from the county will decide whether or not to appoint or re-appoint the guardian or conservator.
Study subjects have the following rights:
The law requires that DHS provide the background study results to the county probate court. The study subject doesn't receive a copy of the background study results from DHS; however s/he has the right to obtain a copy of the results from the court.
The background study needs to be completed once every two years. If the case transfers from one county to another, or if the guardian/conservator has multiple wards/protected persons in different counties, the study may be transferred from one county to another as long as it has been completed within the past two years and the county in which the case is transferring to allows it. Please contact the counties directly with questions regarding their transferability policy.