If you are considering the merits of conservatorships, it is first important to understand that the process is complex. Determining if a conservatorship is necessary is based on several factors. To get the answers you need, it helps to discuss your loved one’s circumstances with an experienced attorney near Beverly Hills, such as Susan B. Geffen.
If you wish to take over legal guardianship of an adult, a conservatorship is a process that may provide solutions. In many cases, conservatorship becomes necessary when there are medical, financial or mental health concerns associated with an elderly patient. However, a conservator is not immediately granted blanket guardianship.
The capacity of the conservatee to make decisions is taken into account. In some cases, the individual retains the right to make decisions on certain matters while the conservator is granted responsibility for other decisions. For instance, the individual may still have control over medical decisions while the conservator controls finances.
What is a Conservatorship?
When a conservatee is left vulnerable to undue influence related to issues such as medical treatment or financial decisions, a probate court in or around Beverly Hills may create a conservatorship. One of the most common examples of this involves alleged or suspected elder abuse.
A petition is filed with the probate court to obtain letters of conservatorship with other relevant forms. Establishing the reason for a proposed conservatorship is important, along with providing a list that details close family and friends.
Once a filed petition is in place, the potential conservatee’s rights are represented by an attorney. In the case of filings in Beverly Hills, assets belonging to the conservatee are used to cover the attorney’s fees. In order to establish whether or not a conservator should be appointed by the court, the attorney consults with the conservatee. The listed relatives and friends are also contacted before the attorney produces a report that outlines legal arguments for or against establishing a conservatorship.
Benefits of Conservatorship
The role of the court in a conservatorship is one of the greatest benefits of the process. This is often the first line of defense against conservatees falling victim to abuse. Where a conservatee is deemed to need assistance but is not receptive to the idea, a conservatorship is often the only option. There are also reviews at the six month stage and every year thereafter.
A conservatorship is designed to benefit a potential conservatee, rather than those filing for the associated responsibilities. Mental capacity is typically the focus of a conservatorship, as most physical incapacities do not prevent an individual from taking responsibility for medical or financial matters.
Coma or other forms of incapacity mean that the proposed conservatee cannot communicate decisions. Similarly, individuals suffering from illnesses like Alzheimer’s or dementia may not possess the capacity to make sound decisions. Some individuals are born with genetic disabilities that are permanent in nature and preclude the ability to make sound legal decisions independently.
The responsibility of protecting these individuals then falls to family and friends. The focus of a conservatorship is therefore identifying a trustworthy individual to care for those who are vulnerable to abuse.
At her Los Angeles practice, located near Beverly Hills, Susan B. Geffen provides compassionate support and representation for family and friends of potential conservatees. She understands the complex nature of these relationships and will use her many years of experience to get the best result for every client and their loved one.
Call or contact Susan online to schedule a confidential conservatorship consultation if you live in or around Beverly Hills. With care and understanding, she can address any of your questions or concerns.