Resource Directory /

Transition: Guardianship and Alternatives Resources

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  • “Consider the Alternatives: Decision-Making Options for Young Adults with Intellectual Disabilities”

    As youth with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) are making plans to attend college, it is more important than ever that families become fully informed about guardianship as well as less-limiting alternatives. This brief, written by Think College partners at PACER Center, defines some of the options and possible ramifications. It also suggests ways to promote self-determination no matter which option is chosen.

  • Decision-Making Plan Tool

    Everyone’s ability to make decisions changes across a lifetime including people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

    The Arc’s Center for Future Planning created this handout to help individuals with IDD and their families learn how to make, review and adjust a decision-making plan throughout a person’s life to maximize their ability to make their own decisions.

  • Decision-Making Supports

    People with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD have the same right to make decisions about their lives as people without disabilities. It is important to recognize and respect that right.

    This handout from The Arc’s Center for Future Planning provides information about available supports to help people with IDD to make decisions.

  • Guardianship and Alternatives: Skills and Tips

    There are many helpful links to help you explore guardianship or another form of support to protect adults who cannot make decisions on their own.

    (English) (Spanish)

  • Guardianship Myths

    There are many myths about guardianship that people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and their families should understand.

    The Arc’s Center for Future Planning has created this handout to help.

  • Identifying Alternatives to Guardianship

    The Transition Services Liaison Project (TSLP) South Dakota aims to help students with disabilities reach their maximum potential in their transition from high school to the adult world.

    The project’s Alternatives to Guardianship Stoplight Tool can help with identifying a person’s ability to make decisions and manage key areas of life. It is intended to help with exploring alternatives and less restrictive options to general or full guardianship.

  • Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) for Transition-Age Youth in Care

    Information and resources for youth in care and their foster families on promoting independence and self-sufficiency. The website includes the Foster Care Transition Toolkit and Supporting Emancipated Youth Services Program (More information is available on Emancipated Youth Services at

  • Illinois Legal Aid

    You can find legal self-help centers at courthouses and libraries across the state. A legal self-help center is a place where you can learn about the law, your legal rights and how to go to court. If you have a legal issue, you can go to a legal self-help center in your community to use a computer for free, search online for answers to your legal questions, find and prepare court forms, and get other help depending on your location.

  • National Resource Center on Supported Decision-Making

    Resources to help you understand how less restrictive alternatives can be created and make the most of an individual’s capabilities and supports.

  • Prairie State Legal Services

    Prairie State Legal Services is an organization that offers free legal services for low-income persons and those age 60 and over who have serious civil legal problems and need legal help to solve them.

    There are 11 office locations serving 36 counties in northern Illinois. The resources page also provides references to self-help information.