Most people know what guardianship is, but few understand what a conservatorship is. In short, a conservatorship is an integral part of the estate planning process for parents. Parents appoint another adult who is responsible for managing the finances of their children until they turn 18 should they pass away. Once the child turns 18, they are allowed to take over their funds.

A conservator could be appointed to assume a parent’s duties on behalf of his or her child if that parent dies or becomes unable to make rational decisions. However, a conservator must be of sound mind and must make all financial decisions in the best interest of the child.

If you have any questions about becoming a conservator in Lombard, it may be helpful to contact an attorney who values guidance, protection, and peace of mind.

Conservatorships vs. Guardianships

Many people use the terms guardianship and conservatorship interchangeably. Such confusion is common, however, a guardian and conservator have slightly different responsibilities. A guardian is responsible for caring for another person. They make personal decisions regarding schooling, medical care, and everything a parent would be expected to do for a child. A conservator, on the other hand, is only responsible for making financial decisions for their protected person.

A conservator may be responsible for carrying out the following duties for their protected person:

  • Monitoring and managing their investments
  • Making purchases on their behalf
  • Disbursing money as needed to them
  • Ensuring their taxes and debts are paid

Legally, a conservator is expected to make decisions that are in the best interest of the protected person they are responsible for.

Appointing a Conservator

Conservators must be appointed by a court. When creating a conservatorship, the court must assess the ability of the protected person to make rational decisions on a protected person’s behalf. If the person is a child or disabled adult, the court will likely establish a conservatorship.

The court is responsible for selecting a suitable conservator, who is subject to the supervision of the court. If a conservator is named in the estate plans of a parent, the court still needs to determine if the conservator is fit to fulfill their duties. If the court determines they are not, it could appoint a different conservator.

While planning their estate, a parent may choose to give power of attorney to another person. The person they give power to is responsible for making financial decisions on their behalf if they become unable to for any reason. By taking this step, individuals could ensure the court does not have to appoint a conservator for them.

Call an Attorney If You Are Considering Becoming a Conservator in Lombard

If you are considering becoming a conservator in Lombard for someone else, it may be wise to retain an attorney. If you are subject to a court evaluation, an attorney could advocate on your behalf and ensure the court honors your rights. A skilled attorney could also help plan your estate and prevent any future confusion.

Call an attorney now if you have any questions about acting as a conservator.