As the senior population continues to grow, more people are likely to seek guardianships and conservatorships over their loved ones. The court appoints these positions once it has been determined an individual no longer has the ability to act in their own best interest. Below is an overview of what these roles entail and how they’re established.
What Is Guardianship & Conservatorship?
Guardianships and conservatorships are both court-ordered relationships that grant one person the legal authority to make decisions on behalf of another person, who is referred to as a ward. However, a guardian is appointed to make personal decisions on issues including medical care, living arrangements, and education, whereas a conservator is appointed to make financial decisions. In some cases, a guardian may also make decisions in regards to the ward’s estate and property.
Responsibilities of Guardians & Conservators
Guardians are expected to handle all aspects that affect a ward’s day-to-day life. They ensure their loved one’s basic needs are met and they’re getting proper health care. Guardians must also maintain relationships with the ward’s attorneys, financial consultants, doctors, and service providers. Conservators are typically responsible for paying the ward’s bills, investing their assets, entering into contracts on their behalf, and taking care of any other duty that pertains to their finances.
Process of Becoming a Guardian or Conservator
To be appointed guardianship or conservatorship in Nebraska, a petition must be filed with the court. This will start the process of finding out if your relative lacks the capacity to make sound decisions. All applicants are required to undergo a background check, enroll in an educational course, and provide information about their own finances. After being appointed, guardians must report to the court annually to give an update on the ward’s condition, and conservators must present annual accounting records.
If you’re looking to oversee the affairs of an aging family member, contact The Law Offices of Bromm, Lindahl, Freeman-Caddy & Lausterer. With a well-established history that spans more than a century, the firm has helped countless residents throughout Saunders County, NE, successfully set up a guardianship or conservatorship. To schedule a consultation, call (402) 443-3225, or visit their website for more information on the legal services they provide.