Conservatorships and Guardianships

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Throughout our lives, the people closest to us may not be able to take care of themselves. Children, for example, require constant care from a trusted adult. As we age, we may face medical issues or cognitive delays that prevent us from managing our finances and property. Furthermore, people with physical or mental disabilities may need support from their parents and loved ones throughout their lives. These people deserve all the support and protections they can get, and that’s where conservatorships and guardianships offer a solution.

Conservatorships and guardianships were designed with your most vulnerable loved ones in mind. However, it’s important to know that these terms mean different things depending on which state you live in. Whether you’re exploring options of conservatorships for adults or taking guardianship of a minor, Crow Estate Planning & Probate wants to make sure you and those close to you have their assets protected.

 

Conservatorship & Guardianship Areas We Serve

What Is a Guardianship?

Guardianship is when an adult is court-appointed to care for the health and well-being of an individual who cannot do so themselves. Guardianship cases often come up when a child loses their family or an adult has some form of physical or mental disability, whether it be a lifelong condition or sudden injury. Typically, the guardian is a family member, friend, or someone else closely related to the individual.

Potential guardians are required to convince the court and jury that they would be a suitable guardian and able to handle the individual’s life, personal care, health care, education, and career. They may also have to continuously prove that throughout the guardianship. When the guardianship involves a minor, it ends when the child turns 18.

In Kentucky, the term guardianship is used when an individual over the age of 18 needs an appointed individual to manage their affairs and assets, similar to how a conservatorship is used in other states.

What Is a Conservatorship?

Conservatorships, on the other hand, delegate a person to care for the individual’s property, healthcare and finances. The court process for applying conservators is similar to that of potential guardians, and in cases where both are necessary, the same person can apply for both roles.

Once granted conservatorship, the conservator will handle all of the individual’s income, assets, properties, debts, and other financial matters. Like guardians, they may also be subject to audit. Before a conservator can sell or transfer any of the individual’s assets, they must have court approval to do so.

Limited Guardianships and Conservatorships

While conservatorships and guardianships give someone full control over an individual’s property,  or well-being, protection to this extent may not be suitable for everyone. Many people can handle some of their personal and financial matters but need help with others. In this case, the court may approve a limited guardianship or conservatorship, which places more limitations on how a conservator or guardian can act on the other person’s behalf.

Regardless of the type of guardianship or conservatorship you apply for, note that the person approved will become responsible for the individual’s debts and expenses as they come up. In most cases, these roles are lifelong appointments. The exceptions are when a minor ages out and an adult recovers from their injury or is otherwise ready to become independent.

Protect Your Loved Ones With Crow Estate Planning & Probate

Crow Estate Planning & Probate’s lawyers for conservatorships and guardianship are prepared to guide you through every step of our process. We bring our extensive legal knowledge to every case and ensure all documentation is complete and filed to expedite the process. Becoming a conservator or guardian can change your life in an instant, and we’ll make sure you’re prepared to navigate any legal situation. Connect with an attorney for conservatorship today — we offer free consultations so you can learn about your options before you decide to move forward.

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