Connecticut law allows for both voluntary and involuntary conservatorships. A conservator is someone appointed by a court to manage the personal or financial decisions on behalf of an adult who lacks the capacity to handle their own affairs. In the case of a voluntary conservatorship, a person who recognizes their own incapacity or inability to manage their own affairs can ask the court to appoint a conservator of their own choosing. In practical terms, however, a voluntary conservator exercises the same amount of authority as an involuntary conservator. A voluntary conservatorship can be withdrawn by the conserved person with probate court approval.
An involuntary conservatorship is when a person cannot manage their own affairs and property and still refuses to voluntarily ask someone for help. The probate court can then determine, after a hearing, that the person is not competent to handle their affairs and appoint a conservator over the conserved person’s objection.
One reason for allowing voluntary conservatorships is so that a person can avoid the indignity of being formally declared incompetent by the court. A voluntary conservatorship requires no such finding. But this can also lead to confusion over the role that a conserved person actually plays with respect to a voluntary conservatorship.
Does A Conserved Person Maintain Some Level of Control Over Their Assets?
According to a recent Connecticut Supreme Court decision, the conserved person does not retain control over their estate once a voluntary conservator had been named. A conservator, even one appointed at the conserved person’s voluntary request, has “exclusive authority” over the entire estate. However, the conservator cannot act without oversight. However, the conservator cannot do whatever they please with the conserved person’s assets without oversight. The conservator must obtain the permission and approval of the probate court for certain actions. This provides a level of protection for the conserved person.
Contact a Connecticut Estate Planning and Conservatorship Attorney Today
The decision to seek a conservatorship, voluntary or involuntary, is never an easy one. That is why it is critical to work with an experienced Canton conservatorship lawyer who can guide you through the process. Contact the Law Office of Brian S. Karpe, LLC, if you need to speak with an attorney today.