11.92.190  <<  11.92.195 >>   End of Chapter

Incapacitated personsRight to associate with persons of their choosing. (Effective until January 1, 2021.)

(1) Except as otherwise provided in this section, an incapacitated person retains the right to associate with persons of the incapacitated person's choosing. This right includes, but is not limited to, the right to freely communicate and interact with other persons, whether through in-person visits, telephone calls, electronic communication, personal mail, or other means. If the incapacitated person is unable to express consent for communication, visitation, or interaction with another person, or is otherwise unable to make a decision regarding association with another person, a guardian of the incapacitated person, whether full or limited, must:
(a) Personally inform the incapacitated person of the decision under consideration, using plain language, in a manner calculated to maximize the understanding of the incapacitated person;
(b) Maximize the incapacitated person's participation in the decision-making process to the greatest extent possible, consistent with the incapacitated person's abilities; and
(c) Give substantial weight to the incapacitated person's preferences, both expressed and historical.
(2) A guardian or limited guardian may not restrict an incapacitated person's right to communicate, visit, interact, or otherwise associate with persons of the incapacitated person's choosing, unless:
(a) The restriction is specifically authorized by the guardianship court in the court order establishing or modifying the guardianship or limited guardianship under chapter 11.88 RCW;
(b) The restriction is pursuant to a protection order issued under chapter 74.34 RCW, chapter 26.50 RCW, or other law, that limits contact between the incapacitated person and other persons; or
(c)(i) The guardian or limited guardian has good cause to believe that there is an immediate need to restrict an incapacitated person's right to communicate, visit, interact, or otherwise associate with persons of the incapacitated person's choosing in order to protect the incapacitated person from abuse, neglect, abandonment, or financial exploitation, as those terms are defined in RCW 74.34.020, or to protect the incapacitated person from activities that unnecessarily impose significant distress on the incapacitated person; and
(ii) Within fourteen calendar days of imposing the restriction under (c)(i) of this subsection, the guardian or limited guardian files a petition for a protection order under chapter 74.34 RCW. The immediate need restriction may remain in place until the court has heard and issued an order or decision on the petition.
(3) A protection order under chapter 74.34 RCW issued to protect an incapacitated person as described in subsection (2)(c)(ii) of this section:
(a) Must include written findings of fact and conclusions of law;
(b) May not be more restrictive than necessary to protect the incapacitated person from abuse, neglect, abandonment, or financial exploitation as those terms are defined in RCW 74.34.020; and
(c) May not deny communication, visitation, interaction, or other association between the incapacitated person and another person unless the court finds that placing reasonable time, place, or manner restrictions is unlikely to sufficiently protect the incapacitated person from abuse, neglect, abandonment, or financial exploitation as those terms are defined in RCW 74.34.020.
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