Guardianship and financial administration 

What is an administrator?

At times, individuals in our community need help with their financial affairs; this is where an administrator, such as the Public Trustee can help.

An administrator must act in line with the Guardianship and Administration Act 2000 and the directions of QCAT or a court order.

What is an guardian?

A guardian is a person QCAT appoints to help an adult with impaired decision making capacity.

The guardian ensures an adult’s needs are met and interests are protected by making certain personal health care decisions on their behalf.

The Public Trustee is not the same as the Public Guardian.


How is an administrator or guardian appointed?

Applications to QCAT for the appointment of an administrator can be made by a family member, close friend, professional or any person who has a genuine interest in the welfare of the adult – including the individual themselves.

Or, if in a civil proceeding the court orders an amount to be paid to an adult with impaired capacity, the court may appoint an administrator.

People may also apply to QCAT to appoint a guardian. QCAT can appoint guardians to make personal decisions on an individual’s behalf in relation to matters such as:

  • accommodation
  • the provision of services
  • health and personal matters
  • legal matters not relating to the individual’s finances and property, and
  • with whom the individual has contact with.

The Public Trustee is not the same as the Public Guardian.

QCAT or a court will determine whether a guardian and/or administrator may be nominated in the application however, QCAT or a court will make the final decision.

How the tribunal decides

The tribunal will only appoint a guardian or administrator if it is satisfied that all of the below apply:

  • The adult has impaired capacity
  • There is a need for a decision or the adult is likely to do something that involves or is likely to involve unreasonable risk to the adult’s health, welfare or property
  • If a guardian or administrator is not appointed, the adult's needs will not be adequately met or their interests will not be adequately protected

Who can be appointed as an administrator?

QCAT or a court will consider whether the proposed administrator is:

  • readily available
  • able to provide appropriate assistance to the adult
  • possesses the financial ability and accountability, and
  • in a position of conflict.

An administrator must be:

  • over the age of 18
  • not bankrupt, and
  • not a paid carer or health provider for the adult.

The Public Trustee can be appointed as administrator (but not as guardian.)

As the largest administrator in Queensland, we currently help manage the financial matters of over 9,500 individuals.

We are fully accountable and impartial. You can count on us to always be there.

Helpful resources

Aged and Disability Advocates Australia have developed a range of video resources to offer those living with intellectual disability and their supporters a way to learn about rights and the responsibilities involved in supported decision making processes.

You can access these videos here.

The Australian Guardianship and Administration Council have developed National Standards for Financial Managers.  These standards have also been written in an easy English version – Things your financial manager should do.

The Queensland Disability Network has also produced a My Housing Options Workbook to help review current living situations, explore housing options and learn more about rights and responsibilities as a tenant.

Caxton Legal Centre Inc. has created a fact sheet about elder abuse, translated into ten different languages.

Last published: 18/12/2019 4:23:39 AM