Understanding Conservatorship And Guardianship Responsibilities

When you are faced with making decisions concerning a loved one’s wellbeing, it is essential to understand your legal options. A conservatorship or guardianship could be the right legal path to pursue, depending on your individual needs and circumstances. Both a conservatorship and guardianship share similar elements in responsibility, but they differ when it comes to the scope of their duties.


Both conservatorships and guardianships are responsible for caring for an adult ward who has become incapacitated due to disease, mental or physical illness, or other reasons. In both cases, the court typically appoints the adult responsible for various aspects of the ward’s life with control over different legal elements.


Conservatorship Responsibilities

Appointed by the court, a conservator is responsible for making decisions on behalf of the ward. Whereas a guardian handles the legal, medical, and personal affairs of the ward, a conservator is solely responsible for estate planning and financial matters such as managing bank accounts, investments, paying bills, and anything related to the ward’s finances. Conservators typically work with guardians when making decisions concerning major financial moves such as trading stocks and liquidating assets.


Guardianship Responsibilities

In contrast to conservators’ sole financial roles, the court must appoint guardians to act on behalf of an incapacitated adult. Guardianship is established through court hearings that determine if the person in question is incapable of making sound decisions, thus deemed incapacitated. Guardians are responsible for making legal decisions for the ward and for handling health and personal needs. A guardian takes control of the daily life and well-being of the ward.


Appointment Of Conservators And Guardians

The court can appoint any adult who is deemed competent and capable of carrying out a conservative or guardian’s role. This can be a parent, adult child, friend, family member, spouse, or another interested party, including a professional guardian chosen by the court. Concerned family members can request that a neutral party be appointed for these roles if there is conflict in determining the course of care exists, or family members cannot fulfill the responsibilities.


Legal Assistance

If you are concerned for a loved one who can no longer make sound decisions for themselves, or if you have been approached by family or friends to consider becoming a conservator or guardian for a loved one, it is vital to seek legal assistance before proceeding. Hedtke Law Group will help you determine the best course of action for you and your specific needs regarding the responsibilities of a loved one’s care. Contact Hedtke Law Group today for more information regarding conservatorship and guardianship responsibilities and options.