The Guardian Ad Litem, for the purpose of pending litigation puts themselves in the shoes of a legally incompetent person such as a minor child. The Guardian Ad Litem invistigates all issues associated with the case they are assigned to and files a report with the court.
Guardian Ad Litems are usually lawyers or mental health professionals, depending on the court and the circumstances. They investigate the matter, use their own judgement in determining what is in the best interest of the child, and report their findings and recommendations to the court. In contested custody and visitation cases, courts frequently appoint a Guardian Ad Litem for the children.