All conservatorships and/or committee(s) are appointed by regional courts. The petitioner is usually contacted by a concerned person about a person needing help with daily living activities and/or finances. The petitioner will require an attorney to petition the courts and additional personnel from the courts will be assigned to ensure a conservatorship/committee is warranted.
A conservator / committee is the person who is legally appointed to manage the estate and/or health of the infirmed. A conservatorship / committee is a legal tool to provide management for the financial and/or personal affairs of individuals deemed by the court to be physically or mentally incapacitated. A conservatee or Infirmed Person is a person who is the subject of a conservatorship/committee. A Conservator/Committee of the Person is appointed by the court to assume responsibility for decisions regarding the health and welfare of a person. A person is determined by the court to be incapacitated when he or she lacks sufficient understanding or “capacity” to make or communicate responsible decisions concerning his or her daily living needs. A Conservator/Committee of the Estate is responsible for the prudent use and protection of the infirm's assets. The conservator/committee is responsible for inventorying, marshalling and managing all assets and benefits belonging to the infirmed. The conservator/committee receives income, pays obligations of the estate, applies for pensions, and organizes data for the preparation of income tax returns and other related duties.
Any person may be designated by the Social Security Administration or other retirement plans to receive the income and pay the expenses of an incapacitated individual. We do not serve independent of any other designation (e.g. estate trustee, conservator/committee, or power of attorney).
The local probate court often appoints an attorney to represent the alleged incapacitated person. A court investigator is also appointed by the court to determine the need for a conservator / committee and to recommend a suitable person, or approve of the nominated petitioner, to serve in that role. All issues and information are brought before a probate court judge who decides if the person is incapacitated or in need of protection and, accordingly, appoints a conservator/committee. The appointed fiduciary is accountable to the court for his or her work. The fiduciary must report to the court and receive the court's approval in carrying out his responsibilities as specified in Letters of Conservatorship / Committee but may also ask the court for additional information when necessary. A surety bond for the conservator/committee is required, which is intended to protect the assets of the infirm's estate. Note that the bond is paid from the infirm's estate since the protection is for the conserved (infirmed).