A conservatorship is a protective court proceeding for the benefit of a person unable to manage his or her own financial or medical affairs or resist fraud or the undue influence of others.

In a conservatorship of the person, the court appoints a conservator to manage the personal care of a person who cannot properly provide for his or her personal needs for physical health, medical care, food, clothing, or shelter. The conservator decides where the conservatee lives and may be required to decide whether the conservatee should live at home or in an institution.

In a conservatorship of the estate, a court appointed conservator manages the financial affairs of a person who is substantially unable to manage his or her own financial resources or to resist fraud or undue influence. The conservator’s primary responsibility is to conserve, manage, and use the conservatee’s property for the benefit of the conservatee and those whom he or she is obligated to support.

The establishment of a conservatorship imposes significant limitations on the conservatee’s ability to act on his or her own behalf. Under a conservatorship of the estate, a conservatee is presumed to lack capacity to contract, to sell, transfer, or convey property, to make gifts, and to incur debts. Under a conservatorship of the person, the conservatee is presumed to make medical decisions unless the court finds the conservatee lacks the capacity to give informed consent to any form of health care.

Because the establishment of a conservatorship significantly curtails the conservatee’s rights, the court may not appoint a conservator unless the need for one is established by clear and convincing evidence.

Advanced estate planning is an excellent alternative to conservatorship.

The Law Office of David A. Esquibias is experienced in obtaining and defending against conservatorships. If you suspect that a person is unable to manage his or her own affairs, or is unable to resist fraud or undue influence, or desire to resist being deprived of your rights by a conservatorship, please contact us at 805-267-1141, or send an immediate e-mail inquiry to one of our qualified lawyers.