Guardian Info » How Do I Become a Certified Guardian?

How to become a National Master Guardian (NMG):

Check National Master Guardian prerequisites:

  • National Certified Guardian in good standing at time of submission of application.
  • Graduate degree from an accredited college or university with three (3) years of full-time professional guardianship experience OR Bachelor's degree (to include a Registered Nurse) from an accredited college or university with five (5) years of full-time professional guardianship experience OR twelve (12) years full-time experience in the field of guardianship as defined below.
  • Professional guardianship experience is defined to include all of the following:
    • Serving in a position of making decisions (i) as a court-appointed guardian, (ii) as agent for a court-appointed guardian or (iii) in a supervisory capacity over a court-appointed guardian. In all three circumstances, the guardian must be serving two or more wards unrelated to each other; and
    • Spending an average of at least 16 hours per week making decisions as set forth above during at least three (3) of the last five (5) years including the most recent year.
    • Demonstrating experience in at least six of following, including #1:
      1. High degree of competence in managing complex issues.
      2. Manage significant financial estates.
      3. Conduct or arrange for comprehensive assessment of ward's needs.
      4. Provide consultation on a wide range of guardianship issues.
      5. Provide supervision and case oversight to less experienced guardians or staff in a guardianship program.
      6. Plan, implement, control, direct, fund a professional guardianship program.
      7. Have experience with more than one disability group.
      8. Provide training and mentoring to less experienced guardians.
      9. Provide educational opportunities by presenting topics related to guardianship.
      10. Provide consultation regarding medical procedures including use of psychotropic medications and evaluation of behavioral programs.
      11. Advance the profession through policy development, legislative action, advocacy or community outreach.
      12. Provide consultation or make decisions on end of life issues and other complex or controversial issues.
      13. Actively advocate for limited guardianship, alternatives to guardianship and restoration of wards.

    A complete application includes:

    1. Application form
    2. Four (4) professional letters of recommendation on the approved CGC recommendation form
    3. Confidentiality waiver
    4. Proof of employment and education
    5. List of continuing education courses taken during the last two years, including program sponsor, dates, locations, and the number of hours completed
    6. Narrative of how your experience qualifies you as a National Master Guardian
    7. Appropriate fees

Fax or e-mail the packet to (717) 238-9985 or

Check The Examination
You must make a satisfactory showing of competency in guardianship by successfully completing an examination administered by The Center for Guardianship Certification. The National Master Guardian examination is a comprehensive test consisting of a multiple-choice section administered in a three-hour morning session and an essay section administered in a three-hour afternoon session. The exam assesses the candidate's knowledge of best practices in guardianship of the person and estate within the following categories of knowledge relative to guardianship.

  1. Professional role includes concepts of decisions making.
  2. Courts and legal processes.
  3. Professional business practice issues includes quality assurance and business practice.
  4. Guardianship planning process includes knowledge of ward, visits, living arrangements and placement.
  5. Medical, end of life and complex issues.
  6. Financial management and accountability, includes benefits.
  7. Limitations, modification and termination of guardianship includes death issues.