Arata, Swingle, Van Egmond & Heitlinger Arata, Swingle, Van Egmond & Heitlinger

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Caring for a Loved One and Have Questions as Conservator?

California Conservatorship Attorneys Help Families Manage Affairs

It can be heartbreaking when loved ones begin to lose the ability to take care of themselves or their finances. You want to be sure that their interests are being taken care of and their estate is free of abuse. However, being required to suddenly manage investments, collect debts, file taxes and handling cash flow can be overwhelming. Furthermore, decisions must be made over your loved one’s medical care, recreation and daily affairs. If you are facing these tough decisions, then our California conservatorship attorneys can help you take control of your loved ones personal and financial duties.

At Swingle, Van Egmond & Heitlinger, we help families manage their affairs and set up estate plans to bring them peace of mind. Our California conservatorship attorneys can help you establish duties through conservatorship of estate or person. From start to finish, we can prepare your documents, annual reports and draft agreed on duties. Through our counsel, you can safeguard the assets and wellbeing of your loved one. While you cannot roll back the clock for your loved one, you can protect them from personal or financial abuse.

What Is the Conservatorship Process?

If your loved one is unable to handle their financial or personal affairs, the conservatorship process can establish control. There are two types of management options the court can establish: conservatorship of the estate and conservatorship of the person. Conservatorship of the estate appoints a conservator to manage the conservatee’s estate. As a conservator, you control and manage assets, make investments, pay bills, collect income and prepare court reports. Furthermore, depending on the ability of the conservatee, you can establish spending money for your loved one.

Alternatively, conservatorship of person is established when your loved one needs help with decisions over personal care. This includes housing, clothing, transportation, medical care and recreation. This process allows your loved one to continue enjoying life. A court may appoint two conservators, one of the person and one of the estate.

The court will establish a probate or limited conservatorship. Probate conservatorships are established for your loved one if they need assistance due to an accident, illness or age. A limited conservatorship is created if your loved one has a developmental disability. Like the name implies, conservator powers are limited, based on the cognitive abilities of the conservatee. As your loved one loses the ability to care for themselves, rights are given to the conservator.

Generally, a limited conservator will arrange for counseling, social programs and recreational opportunities. These conservatorships can be established 45 days from the date the papers are filed, if the conservatorship is permanent. A temporary conservatorship can be established in case of emergency. If your loved one begins acting erratically and against their own best interests, then emergency conservatorships can be established within days.

What Are the Duties of a Conservator?

Conservator duties are specified by the probate court that appoints you as the conservator. This agreement and all court proceedings become a matter of public record. In general, your duties as a conservator are to protect your loved one, the conservatee. This means you must act in the best interest of the conservatee, both personally and financially. As a conservator you will have the power to make decisions regarding medical treatment, living arrangements and other fiduciary concerns. There are some limitations to your authority as a conservator.

A conservatorship is a court ordered supervision plan. You will need the permission from the judge before certain decisions or actions are taken on behalf of the conservatee. This creates a safeguard for your loved one. For example, a conservator cannot instruct a health care provider to withhold lifesaving medical treatment without court approval. Furthermore, a conservator is required to provide an annual report to the court. This maintains a public record of the status of the conservatee and his or her assets.

Safeguarding Your Family? Our Modesto Conservatorship Attorneys Can Help

Is your loved one’s health declining? Concerned that a financially irresponsible individual may be appointed control over your family members estate? Do not let the emotional stress or the legal process stop you from having peace of mind. Be confident about the wellbeing of your loved. California conservatorship attorneys can help you remedy the situation and protect your family’s legacy.

There are many responsibilities associated with being a conservator. The California conservatorship attorneys at Swingle, Van Egmond & Heitlinger can help. We have represented interested parties in conservatorship proceedings in the state of California for years. With our respected reputation, you can trust our firm to have your loved one’s best interests at heart. Our attorneys are knowledgeable and sympathetic to the unique issues you and your family face at this sensitive time. Call us today at (209) 340-1110 or contact us through our website.

“This firm exemplifies how a multi-faceted group of attorneys can work together to achieve positive results.”

- James M.
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