County Logo
 
Gaurdian Ad Litem Banner
Special thanks to our non-profit Friends of Children of Brevard and for the support they give to our children in need.

About The Guardian Ad Litem Program

We have a continual need for volunteers in Brevard County. Consider joining our program today. 
 
What is a Guardian Ad Litem?
Thousands of abused and neglected children become the subject of judicial proceedings each year in Florida. Their voices are often unheard, and best interests overlooked in the court process. Guardians Ad Litem are citizens who volunteer to become part of a court program to represent the best interests of an assigned child. A Guardian Ad Litem does not have to be a lawyer, counselor, therapist, or parent, since he/she does not perform these roles for the child. The volunteer Guardian Ad Litem is a representative for the child before the court, social service agencies and the community.


What does a guardian ad litem do?

Brevard County Guardian Ad Litem The Guardian Ad Litem represents the best interests of the child in a variety of ways. 

They independently conducts a thorough investigation on behalf of the child. He/she interviews many people: the child, counselors, pediatricians, psychiatrists and psychologists, mental health professionals, people from the neighborhood, schools, churches and law enforcement, and friends. The Guardian Ad Litem also examines and collects records from many sources concerning the child. The Guardian Ad Litem then takes this information to the experts in the community for recommendations on what is best for the child.

The Guardian Ad Litem serves as a monitor of the agencies and persons who provide services to the child. He/she assures that orders of the Court are carried out, and that families and children in need receive the help that they should.

The Guardian Ad Litem assures that the child’s wishes are heard, and that the best interest of the child is presented to the Court and agencies dealing with the child. He/she writes reports and speaks in court, for the best interest of the child.

We have a 30 hour training class, provide volunteers with a mentor and our staff members and lawyers advise and counsel during each case. In addition, each program has a network of community resources and experts who are available to assist each Guardian Ad Litem.


History of the Program

The State of Florida Guardian Ad Litem (GAL) Program resulted from the Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act of 1974. In 1980, the Florida Legislature appropriated funds to the Office of the State Courts Administrator to implement a pilot program that would examine the effectiveness of a volunteer based program for the delivery of guardian ad litem services for abused and neglected children. The evaluation report of the pilot program concluded that the volunteer model, consisting of lay persons recruited, trained, and supervised by professional staff, was a feasible, economical, and effective means of providing guardian ad litem services to Florida's abused and neglected children.

In subsequent years, the Legislature provided funding for the establishment of guardian ad litem programs in every circuit to represent the best interests of abused and neglected children through a volunteer model. By 1990, all of Florida's twenty judicial circuits had volunteer-based programs for the delivery of guardian ad litem services that were administratively managed by the trial courts.

Guardian Ad Litem

Moore Justice Center
2825 Judge Fran Jamieson Way
Viera, FL 32940

GAL Program Office: (321) 690-6823
Fax: (321) 690-6897

Office hours are Monday - Friday
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Closed weekends and legal holidays.
 

CASA - Guardian Ad Litem


Contact Webmaster about this website's content, services, or technical issues.
Board of County Commissioners
2725 Judge Fran Jamieson Way  Viera, FL 32940
Tel: (321) 633-2000
Subscribe to Brevard County Public Information Releases and Newsletters
Subscribe to Brevard County Public Information Releases
County Webmail | Using Our Site | Privacy Statement | ADA Notice | Site Map
Copyright © 2014 Brevard County, Florida. All rights reserved.

Under Florida law, e-mail addresses are public records. If you do not want your e-mail address released in response to a public-records request, do not send electronic mail to this entity. Instead, contact this office by phone or in writing.