A conservator is a person who is appointed to protect and manage the funds and property of a person who is unable to manage his own assets due to a disability, or mental or physical illness (the “ward”). The conservator’s role is in effect to step into the shoes of the incapacitated person and make the decisions for that person. The assets of the ward must be protected and, where appropriate, invested in safe investments that are not speculative. The conservator may not spend any of the ward’s money for himself/herself without a prior court order.

All monies belonging to the ward are carefully monitored by the court. Within three months of the appointment, the conservator must complete an “inventory” of the ward’s assets and file it with the court. This is essentially a list of what the ward owns, with the value of each item as of the date of appointment. In addition, the conservator must file an accounting each year with the court, listing precisely how much money came into the estate and how the conservator has spent the money of the ward. The conservator’s responsibility to fulfill the ward’s legalobligations includes making certain thattax returns are accurately filed with the Internal Revenue Service and the state.

Carlin & Shapiro can assist you with all stages of a conservatorship proceeding, including preparing the inventory or the yearly accounting.