Initiation of Conservatorship and Guardianship Proceedings
Any "interested person" can initiate a conservatorship or guardianship proceeding by filing a petition with the court. A conservator may be appointed if the party proposing the conservatorship can prove that the proposed protected person is financially incapable and has assets that require management by a conservator. An adult guardianship may be established if the Court finds that a guardian is necessary to protect the well-being of the proposed protected person.
Sometimes there are objections to a petition for a conservatorship or guardianship. Objectors may include the proposed protected person, their spouse, family members, or other interested persons. If the parties are unable to come to an agreement, an evidentiary hearing before a judge may be required.
Upon hearing the evidence, the judge will first decide if a conservatorship or guardianship is necessary. If the judge determines a guardian and/or conservator is necessary, the judge then determines the most suitable person to serve in that role.
Administration of Guardianships and Conservatorships
By law, guardians and conservators must file annual reports on the status of the protected person and/or any property being managed by the fiduciary. Additionally, fiduciaries must get Court approval before take certain actions such as moving the protected person, selling a protected person's residence, or making payments to themselves for services rendered. Cartwright Baer Johansson PC regularly represents professional and non-professional fiduciaries in administering guardianships and conservatorships.