How to Become a Conservator

A daughter may become conservator of her ill mother's estate.

A conservator is a person who is given the power and responsibility to handle some or all of another person's assets and financial affairs. The court appoints the conservator when a person is considered by the court to be unable to handle his own financial affairs.

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Step 1

Initiate the request with a family law attorney and/or the probate court. An individual can request a conservator for himself, or any adult interested in the well being of that individual may petition the probate court to become his conservator.

Step 2

Provide documentation to show that the individual in question cannot handle her finances anymore. It must be shown that the individual is wasting money, or not spending sufficient money to meet her own care or needs, or the needs of dependent children. Provide medical information as well if the reason for the inability to care for herself is due to a related illness or mental state.

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Step 3

Allow the court to interview the involved parties and review the documentation submitted. The court will conduct an investigation, background check on the proposed conservator and appoint someone to meet with the individuals for whom the conservatorship is being requested. A hearing will be scheduled after that.

Step 4

Attend the hearing to learn of the official decision of the court. If the court finds that the individual is incapable of taking care of himself financially, and the proposed conservator passes all background checks, the conservatorship will be legally established at the hearing. Once appointed, the conservator has control of all or part of the individual's income, property and savings.

Tip

When an individual has a conservator named for her, it is likely to affect her sense of independence. The conservator should recognize and respect this. There are filing fees for conservatorships. There may also be additional charges for the court's investigation. Conservators may be paid for their services from the individual's estate if the court approves such a request. The conservator has the responsibility to spend and invest the money for the individual's benefit. The conservator has the right to hire professionals such as lawyers, investment advisors and accountants to assist with the conservatorship. The complexity of the job will greatly depend on the value of the property, the types of assets, the individual's needs, the extent of family cooperation and the presence of dependents.

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