Section 4 - Appointment Order

As amended through October 8, 2020
Section 4 - Appointment Order
(a) Appointment of a guardian ad litem shall be by written order of the court.
(b) In plain language understandable to non-lawyers, the order shall set forth:
(1) the reasons for the appointment, focusing upon the factors listed in Section 3(c) of this Rule;
(2) the specific duties to be performed by the guardian ad litem in the case;
(3) the deadlines for completion of these duties to the extent appropriate;
(4) the duration of the appointment; and
(5) the terms of compensation consistent with Section 11 of this Rule.
(c) The court shall provide in the appointment order as much detail and clarity as possible concerning the guardian ad litem's duties. Providing such specificity will assist the parties in understanding the guardian ad litem's role and will enable the court to exercise effective oversight of the guardian ad litem's role.
(d) There is no right to a peremptory change of a guardian ad litem. Allegations that a guardian ad litem appointment is unnecessary, that a particular appointee is unqualified or otherwise unsuitable, or that an appointee is or has become biased should be raised without delay and should be addressed by trial courts through motion practice. Any appeal from a trial court's decision on such a motion shall be prosecuted pursuant to Tennessee Rules of Appellate Procedure 9 and 10.

Commentary

The omission of the original Section 4(d) (conflicts of interests) from revised Rule 40A does not mean that a guardian ad litem may ignore a conflict of interest. On the contrary, a guardian ad litem who runs afoul of the conflict-of-interest provisions of the Rules of Professional Conduct is subject to appropriate disciplinary action.