Since a conservatorship allows for serious control over another person, the court is strict in the procedure during and after a conservator is appointed. As an experienced conservatorship attorney for Los Angeles area residents, we assist conservators to fulfill their fiduciary responsibilities regarding the conservatee’s living situation, health care, budget, income and additional duties assigned to a conservator.
With a proper estate plan, which includes a living trust and powers of attorney, you may be able to avoid a conservatorship. When you become incapacitated, it is important to have someone you trust make decisions that affect your medical and personal care as well as manage all your financial affairs. If pursuing conservatorship law options is the most beneficial option for your situation, we will stand by you throughout the process. As a professional and knowledgeable conservatorship attorney in Los Angeles County we promptly address any concerns throughout the process.
If you have a family member who has not set up an estate plan for themselves and who is not able to responsibly handle their own finances, then it is advisable to contact a conservatorship attorney. When a loved one is beginning to lose, or has lost, capacity to take care of themselves and you sense it is possible their affairs may be mismanaged by someone else, then it is time to consult with a conservatorship attorney.
We can discuss what to do now to reduce and eliminate future financial loss, address any mental health concerns and understand what living environment may be best.
Not always, other choices may be considered. Understand that creating a conservatorship deprives the conservatee of all ability to make their own decisions. With this in mind, a conservatorship may not be the best option. Alternatives exist, such as living trusts, protective orders, joint bank accounts, an advance health care directive or financial powers of attorney.
In California, a conservatorship is established when a judge appoints a person or a group of people to make decisions on behalf of another. The decisions are made by the conservator or conservators, which governs either the conservatee’s care or their finances — or both. When an adult is unable to care for themselves or their Los Angeles estate, a conservatorship can be petitioned by an attorney.
But there are multiple types of conservatorships, and the advice of a competent Los Angeles conservatorship attorney is needed unless you don’t mind making the wrong decision and running the risk of harming your loved one’s care.
One of the types is called a Regular Conservatorship, which can be a conservatorship of both the person and the estate, or the person or the estate. The other is a Limited Conservatorship, or a conservatorship for persons with developmental disabilities. To make matters more confusing, there is also a third type of conservatorship called a Temporary Conservatorship, but that’s just a temporary form of protection put in place while a general conservatorship works its way through the courts.
As mentioned, a general conservatorship seeks to provide management of the care and finances of someone that is unable to care for both themselves. Most often, they are invoked when an elder has shown reduced mental capacity and the family has decided it would be in their best interest of the conservatee to make decisions on their behalf.
A general conservatorship or regular conservatorship may consist of two parts. The first part, or the Conservatorship of the Person, is tasked with the individual’s personal care and health, with an eye towards things like housing, food, medical attention and any health-related decisions. On the other hand, the Conservatorship of the Estate is primarily concerned with financial matters such as the payment of bills or income collection on behalf of the conservatee.
Most times, both a conservatorship of the person and a conservatorship of the estate are needed and are filed at the same time. However, for adults with disabilities or other developmental issues, a limited conservatorship is all that is needed, which means that only one conservatorship is sought, such as a conservatorship of the person or a conservatorship of the estate or both.
If, for example, someone’s mental capacity is robust, but their health is on the decline, a conservatorship of the person may be in order. But a younger person with good health that is not of sound mind may require a conservatorship of the estate.
That said, a Los Angeles conservatorship attorney may elect to skip a conservatorship altogether if the conservatee is able to sign and understand an Advance Healthcare Directive or Durable Power of Attorney. Other reasons for dropping a conservatorship is when a conservatee is able to keep up with a defined plan, or if they’re in a partnership where the spouse or partner can handle health and financial matters. If a conservatee is only receiving Social Security or welfare, a representative payee is warranted instead, though a conservatorship of the person may still be needed.
When filed by a Los Angeles conservatorship attorney, conservatorships last until the end of the conservatee’s life unless specified otherwise, such as when following a serious illness or accident where the conservatee was unable to make decisions for themselves. However, these types of defined-end conservatorships are rare and something like power of attorney or a healthcare directive may be better suited to the circumstances. In other rare instances, a conservatorship may also be terminated if the conservatee’s assets are exhausted, though a conservatorship of the person may remain in effect.
If you are wondering how to get a conservatorship in California, contact Los Angeles conservatorship attorney Alice A. Salvo. Alice and her team are ready and able to answer any questions you may have about conservatorships, and her years of experience as a conservatorship attorney in Los Angeles, CA, means that you will have the best legal minds helping you prepare for the continued care of your loved one.
Please contact our convenient Woodland Hills conservatorship attorney to schedule a free initial consultation. For those seeking a conservatorship attorney in Los Angeles County, we provide all necessary services and guidance for the conservator, conservatee or a family member.
Please call 818-676-9572 or use our online contact form to schedule a free review of your particular situation. We will provide answers and discuss any important concerns you have regarding conservatorship law.