Limited Conservatorship is a legal proceeding for protection of developmentally disabled adults. It gives the person(s) appointed by the court the authority to manage certain facets of their loved one’s life, including the authority to make decisions that promote personal growth and independence.
There are seven powers allowable by law, however courts tend to limit the number to five, which are:
1) The power to decide where your loved one will live.
2) The power to access all of your loved one’s confidential records (medical and educational).
3) The power to place your loved one in an educational program that you approve.
4) The power to make medical decisions for your loved one.
5) The power to restrict your loved one from contracting for goods and services.
The two powers rarely granted but allowable with good cause are:
6) The power to limit your loved one’s choice of his or her social and sexual contacts.
7) The power to restrict your loved one from marrying without your consent.
With the limited powers listed above, limited conservator(s) can set parameters for their loved one’s health, safety, and welfare that will protect them as they proceed with State services offered through Regional Centers throughout California. California is unique in providing Regional Centers for persons with developmental disabilities. To qualify for services, one must have intellectual disabilities, cerebral palsy, epilepsy, or autism, as diagnosed by a treating physician during the person’s minority (before the age of 18). A qualified adult can receive services for the rest of his or her life, and the family who care for him or her can also receive services for respite and transportation. Everyone facing these challenges does well to become familiar with these services.
If family does not step up to care for their loved one, the State will. Unfortunately, State caseworkers have many cases and cannot give the care and attention family members can, as limited conservators for their loved one.
The legal process is expensive. You can pay an attorney to do this process, or you can do it yourself. The action plan found in Ms. Mejía’s workbook gives you that choice. Limited Conservatorships: Protecting Developmentally Disabled Adults: A How-to Guide provides all the tools you need to successfully prepare the court paperwork, represent yourself in court, and save thousands of dollars in attorney fees.
There is no other book on the market that provides what Ms. Mejía offers in her comprehensive workbook. Take responsibility now for your loved one’s adult needs. You will never regret it! Click on this link for access to the book on Amazon.
Handbook for Conservators
Most courts will require possession of the Judicial Council of California’s Handbook for Conservators. Chapter 3 addresses the general issues unique to Limited Conservatorships. Please read and share at least that chapter with relatives to the 2nd degree who will be noticed of the legal proceeding concerning the family member with developmental disabilities. The Handbook is also available in Spanish. The sites for finding the publications are provided below:
English version: http://www.courts.ca.gov/xbcr/cc/handbook.pdf
Spanish version: http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/manueldeltutor.pdf
Most of the forms needed to prepare for establishing a Limited Conservatorship in the State of California can be found on the Judicial Council of California website or the viewer’s Local County Superior Court website. At the prompt for legal forms, select “Probate–Guardianships and Conservatorships”, and follow the workbook step by step to know how to prepare the appropriate forms for a smooth, successful experience in the legal proceeding. The site for finding those forms is: http://www.courts.ca.gov/forms.htm
Remember to locate your Local Superior Court County’s Court Rules for additional forms that may be required. All websites for California counties are provided in the Workbook.
These are the forms you will need:
Request for Waiver of Court Fees
Order Waiving Court Fees
Duties of Conservator and Acknowledgment of Receipt of Handbook
Petition for Appointment of Conservator of the Person Limited Conservatorship
Confidential Supplemental Information
Confidential Conservator Screening Form
Ex Parte Application for Order Requiring Regional Center to Prepare an Assessment Report
Ex Parte Order Requiring Regional Center to Prepare an Assessment Report
Ex Parte Application for Order Appointing Counsel for the Proposed Limited Conservatee
Ex Parte Order Appointing Counsel for the Proposed Limited Conservatee
Referral to Court Investigator
Notice of Hearing
Order Appointing Limited Conservator
Letters of Conservatorship–Limited Conservatorship
Notice of Conservatee’s Rights
Determination of Conservatee’s Appropriate Level of Care
Numbered Pleading Paper
If you need a Temporary Conservator appointed, these are the forms, in addition to those above:
Petition for Appointment of Temporary Conservator
Notice of Hearing on Temporary Conservatorship
Proof of Service–Personal Service
Order Appointing Temporary Conservator
Letters of Temporary Conservatorship
Most courts will require prospective conservators to view the video: With Heart: Understanding Conservatorships. Some counties allow viewing online and provide a link to their form which proposed conservators can sign and file with the court, verifying to the court that it was seen. The link for the video is: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-SX6YkFsP4
Please contact Ms. Mejía with questions or concerns you may have about the process.