Placement in a personal care home or nursing home often can be accomplished without a guardian, as long as the resident is either cooperative or incapable of objecting. A competent adult has the right to determine his or her own residence, and a facility is without authority to restrain an adult absent consent, unless the authority to determine residence has been placed in another (a guardian).
At times it may be difficult to gauge whether a new resident will ultimately object, since he or she may be resistant at first but may adjust after a period of time. Basically, it comes down to whether the administrator of the facility feels they can safely keep the resident and prevent them from harming themselves. Of course, it is also necessary to make the financial arrangements for the care of the resident, which may be done by the resident (if competent), an attorney-in-fact, or by anyone accepting the obligation and guaranteeing payment.
Temporary Health Care Placement Act
In 1999, the Georgia Legislature passed the Temporary Health Care Placement Decision Maker for an Adult Act.
Under the act, upon certification by an attending physician that an adult in a hospital, institution, medical center, or other health care institution is incapable of giving consent to a discharge from such facility and a transfer or admission to an alternative facility or placement, including nursing facilities, personal care homes, rehabilitation facilities, and home- and community-based programs considered to be in the adult's best interest, authority to grant such limited consent is given to a list of persons similar to the Georgia Medical Consent Law.
If no one authorized by such law is available or if all who are available waive authority to consent or dissent to the discharge, transfer, or admission, a petition may be filed in the Probate Court seeking an order solely authorizing such discharge, transfer, or admission. The order will be limited in time to those purposes and does not result in the appointment of a guardian.