(a)    Appointment. At any stage of the proceedings any party may request, or the court may appoint, a guardian ad litem to represent any child alleged to be in need of services or from a family in need of services.

(b)    Qualifications; Responsibilities. The guardian ad litem shall be an attorney or other responsible adult and shall have the following responsibilities:

(1)    To investigate the allegations of the petition and any subsequent matters arising in the case and, unless excused by the court, to file a written report. This report shall include a statement of the wishes of the child and the recommendations of the guardian ad litem and shall be provided to all parties and the court at least 48 hours before the disposition hearing.

(2)    To be present at all court hearings unless excused by the court.

(3)    To represent the interest of the child until the jurisdiction of the court over the child terminates or until excused by the court.

(4)    To perform such other duties and undertake such other responsibilities as the court may direct.

(c)    Bond Not Required. A guardian ad litem shall not be required to post bond but shall file an acceptance of the office.

(d)    Receiving Service. A guardian ad litem shall be entitled to receive service of pleadings and papers as provided by rule 8.635.

(e)    Lay Guardians’ Duties. The duties of lay guardians shall not include the practice of law.

(f)     Substitution or Discharge. The court, on its own motion or that of any party, including the child, may substitute or discharge the guardian ad litem for reasonable cause.