Guardianship and Conservatorship are legal tools designed to protect the wellbeing of individuals unable to make informed decisions due to mental or physical incapacity.
Guardianship and Conservatorship are more than just legal terms; they're strategic plans that ensure the safety and wellbeing of your loved ones when they're unable to care for themselves.
In California, Guardianship refers to the court appointment of an individual with the legal authority to represent and manage the affairs of a minor child. This arrangement allows a guardian to make decisions for the child until they reach legal age.
Guardianships are typically established if both parents are unable to provide a safe and secure home due to death, mental disability, or other circumstances.
Conservatorships are designed to protect incapacitated adults, typically involving matters related to health care and estate. The need for conservatorship may arise if an adult becomes incapacitated due to an injury, accident, disability, or old age.
In some states, the term "guardianship" is used instead of "conservatorship" when referring to the same duties for adults, while "conservator" refers to someone appointed to handle finances.
The process of issuing a guardianship or conservatorship is often difficult, costly, and time-consuming. It involves court proceedings where a judge gives an appointed guardian or conservator the responsibility for making various decisions on an incapacitated person’s behalf.
Conservatorship should be viewed as a last resort when a Durable Power of Attorney or Advance Health Care Directive has not been signed. Otherwise, it can impose significant limitations on a person’s ability to maintain their independence and freedom.
Understanding Guardianship and Conservatorship is a crucial part of legal protection planning. These legal tools provide a roadmap for the protection of your loved ones' wellbeing and ensure their safety and security. Start your journey towards a secure future for your loved ones today.