GUARDIAN & CONSERVATORSWHEN IS A GUARDIAN OR
CONSERVATOR NEEDED?

A Guardian or Conservator is needed when a loved one is not able to make sound decisions for himself on an ongoing basis. This is different from a Health Care Proxy who may make decisions in the short-term during a medical emergency.

When a loved one reaches a point in life when, due to loss of capacity, chronic illness or a disability, he or she cannot effectively make sound decisions for personal, medical and/or financial matters, a guardian or conservator may be needed.

If you have a child or grandchild turning 18 or going off to college, consider giving the gift of an important life lesson by helping them to complete important legal planning documents like selecting trusted adults to be guardians, conservators, or health care proxies in case of emergency.

Ideally you and each member of your family over the age of 18 will have named someone to step into their shoes to make important life decisions should something happen. Otherwise, guardians and conservators are selected and appointed by the court for persons who lack the physical and/or mental capacity to care for themselves and are found to be incapable of caring for themselves or their property.

What are Guardians and Conservators?

GUARDIAN:

A guardian is limited to making only those decisions that will meet the level of need required by the incapacitated person. Some of these decisions may include:
Choice of where the loved one resides
Acceptance or denial of medical care
Control of food, clothing and shelter
Estate and asset preservation planning and protection
Restriction of one’s civil rights and personal freedoms.

CONSERVATOR:

A conservatorship is more limited in scope and concerns only the conservatee’s financial matters when they need assistance. If found necessary, a conservator will be appointed with limited powers that may be necessary to make the financial decisions including the ability to:
Make reasonable payments for the support, maintenance and education
Pay lawful debts
Possess and manage the conservatee’s assets
Collect all debts owed
Engage in tax, estate and asset preservation planning

How can Generations Law Group help you as a guardian or conservator?

Guardianship litigation is unique in that traditional litigation preparation must be combined with knowledge of statutory guardianship regulations and procedures. We zealously represent our clients while keeping the best interests of the alleged protected person or ward always in mind. We can help you draft the documents to assign a guardian and/or conservator for yourself or a consenting loved one.

If you are questioning whether or not a loved one is capable of making legally binding decisions for himself or herself, we can help you address your concerns about whether a loved one is able to make rational, safe decisions.

The role of being either legal Guardian or Conservator requires considerable time and effort. We can assist you through the onerous process and help you to navigate your responsibilities as Guardian and/or Conservator.

PRACTICE LEADER

Cathleen Summers

NURSE ATTORNEY
Cathleen Summers, Esq

Resources

State-Sponsored Programs to Assist Seniors in Massachusetts
How to Talk to Your Children About Health Care Decisions

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