Guardianship institution Unfortunately this specification of service has not yet been completely translated.

Guardianship may occur by law or be established by the district court.

A guardianship is not a public "service" in the strict sense.

The inclusion of guardianship in The Social Code VIII as an "other task" obliges the competent authorities to provide staff for the management of guardianships.

The leadership of a guardianship itself can be entrusted to a specific person, association or youth ministry. The district court decides who is given the leadership of guardianship.

The local youth office becomes "automatically" guardian when a minor unmarried mother has a child. This guardianship ends as soon as the mother comes of age. "automatic" guardianship shall not apply if the father of the child is of legal age, paternity is established before birth and the parents have made a statement of joint parental care.

The actual management of a guardianship takes place within the framework of private law. The persons who carry out guardianship largely perform the tasks that would have to be carried out by the parents without this guardianship. The actual care of the child is usually handed over to other persons and/or bodies. A guardian thus represents the person over whom guardianship is held in all matters (in which the latter cannot decide for himself).


  • Opening of a savings book
  • Permission to have an operation
  • School change
  • Determination of the place of residence

If a guardianship is conducted by a youth ministry, this is called "official guardianship". A person employed by the Youth Office is assigned accordingly. This person performs the tasks associated with guardianship on his own responsibility.

In the field of guardianship, there are more far-reaching provisions which, due to their complexity, cannot be described in detail here.

No documents are required.


A guardianship is not a service that is requested in the proper sense. A guardianship is established when the district court becomes aware that guardianship is required.

The following are some of the conditions for the entry or establishment of guardianship (the following list gives only examples and is not complete):

  • the parents of a child are unknown (findel child/delivery of a child in a "baby flap"/unaccompanied child entered)
  • both parents have been deprived of parental custody by a court's decision
  • the mother of a child is herself a minor
  • both parents have died
  • parental custody of the biological parents rests upon consent to the adoption of a child.

An indispensable condition for the establishment/entry of a guardianship is:

  • that it is not established who is exercising parental custody of a child, or
  • that both parents are not in fact able to exercise parental custody, or
  • that both parents have been deprived of parental custody, or
  • that the mother is a minor.

Related Links

  • §§ 52a ff Sozialgesetzbuch VIII (SGB 8)
  • § 2 Abs. 3 Nr. 11 Sozialgesetzbuch VIII (SGB 8)
  • §§ 1773 bis 1895 Bürgerliches Gesetzbuch (BGB)

Responsible for the content
Lower Saxony Ministry of Social Affairs, Health and Gender Equality

Last update or date of publication