A conservatorship is a legal arrangement that appoints an individual or organization to manage the financial affairs of an incapacitated person. This arrangement can provide peace of mind for individuals who have had their physical, mental, or emotional health deteriorate to the point where they are unable to make their own decisions about finances.
Types of Conservatorships
There are three types of conservatorships in the United States. These include general conservatorships, limited conservatorships, and emergency conservatorships.
- General conservatorships are often used when an adult has become mentally disabled and cannot handle his or her own financial affairs. In this case, a court will appoint a third party—usually a family member—to manage their finances on their behalf.
- Limited conservatorships can be used when an adult still possesses some capacity to make decisions but needs assistance with certain areas such as paying bills or managing investments.
- Finally, emergency conservatorships can be used when an adult has suffered a sudden mental health crisis and needs immediate help with finances before they can regain control over them again.
Responsibilities of a Conservator
The responsibilities of a conservator vary depending on the type of arrangement put in place by the court. Generally speaking though, the primary responsibility is to ensure that all necessary financial obligations are taken care of and that any assets are managed responsibly. This includes making sure that bills are paid on time and investments are managed prudently so as not to expose them to undue risk. The conservator may also be responsible for ensuring that any government benefits such as Social Security payments or disability benefits are received in full and utilized properly.
Listen to this podcast to see what signs may appear when someone is experiencing a decline in their mental health and may need a conservator.
A conservatorship is a powerful tool that can provide much needed relief for individuals whose physical, mental, or emotional health has deteriorated to such a degree that they no longer have the capacity to manage their own finances. There are three types of conservatorships available in the United States – general, limited, and emergency – each tailored to meet different needs and circumstances. A court-appointed conservator’s main responsibility is to ensure that all necessary financial obligations are taken care of in accordance with applicable laws and regulations while also protecting any assets from undue risk or loss due to mismanagement. It’s important for patients considering establishing a conservatorship to understand all their options before making any decisions about how best to proceed with managing their finances during this difficult time.