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Conservatorship Basics

Conservatorship Basics

In a conservatorship, a person is appointed by a judge to organize and take care of another person’s financial or personal needs. The person who is appointed to take care of a person’s affairs is called a conservator, and the person being taken care of is called the conservatee. A conservator is appointed usually when someone who does not have power of attorney for health care or durable power of attorney for financial matters cannot take care of their personal care of finances. There can be several kinds of conservatorships, but commonly there is conservatorship of the person and conservatorship of the estate. Conservatorship of the person is for when a person cannot provide for their personal health, food, clothing, or shelter. A judge appoints a conservator to assist them, and also limits the powers given to the conservator to appropriately meet the needs of the conservatee. For instance, the conservatee still has the right to get married, vote, consent to medical treatment, or make a will, unless the judge decides otherwise. In conservatorship of the state, a judge appoints a person to help someone take care of their financial matters. In California, a judge can appoint a conservator for someone who is “substantially unable to manage his or her financial resources or resist fraud or undue influence.” A person who occasionally shows negligence will not be appointed a conservator, rather, they would have to show that they are consistently unfit to manage their own finances. In conservatorship of the state, the conservatee does not have the legal capacity to enter into any transactions that affect their financial situation,...