Protective proceedings

Any protective proceeding, whether it be executing a power of attorney (POA) in advance of a disabling event or court appointment of a guardian and/or conservator, is based on a finding that a person is incapable of managing personal affairs. To be valid, a POA must be executed when the person is mentally competent as the person executing the POA is granting another the power to act on the person’s behalf.

Guardianships are court proceedings in which a judge will appoint a guardian to act on behalf of an incapacitated person. The incapacity could be based on age, mental incompetence, or combination of factors. A guardian owes a fiduciary duty to the incapacitated person to make decisions designed to achieve the best interest of the incapacitated person.

If the incapacitated person has assets that require management, a Conservator may be appointed. A conservator controls how and incapacitated person’s assets are to be managed and utilized in a manner consistent with the incapacitated person’s best interest. A conservator often works hand-in-hand with the guardian and a single person or entity can be appointed as both conservator and guardian.

Your first step should be to determine your estate planning needs should be to consult with a lawyer with knowledge and experience in these areas. I offer a 60 minute, free consultation, to assess your estate planning needs and help you get started meeting those needs.