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How do I limit the powers of a limited conservator?

On Behalf of | Sep 27, 2020 | Firm News

You may have a family member that, because of a disability stemming from childhood, is not able to exercise self-care and needs someone to act as a conservator. However, you do not want to take away the full rights of your loved one, which is why a limited conservatorship may work best in your situation.

Still, asking a court to appoint a limited conservator may give you pause. How do you limit the powers of your conservator so that your loved one retains as many rights as possible? California law provides some answers.

Limits to a limited conservator

According to state law, a limited conservator already has limits on his or her powers. While a limited conservator has certain care, control and custody powers over a conservatee, the law forbids the conservator from exercising certain powers unless a court grants them. These powers include:

  • Accessing the confidential papers of the conservatee
  • Keeping a conservatee from entering into contracts
  • Repairing the residence of the conservatee
  • Restricting relationships like social contacts or the right to marry
  • Controlling the medical consent of the conservatee

Adding or subtracting powers

California law states that if you submit a petition for a limited conservator, you may ask the court to include one or more of the aforementioned powers if you think your relative cannot handle making certain decisions. The court will review your petition and decide whether to approve your request to add powers or not.

However, you may decide at a later date that your loved one needs more freedom. If so, you may ask the court to eliminate powers from the limited conservator. Still, the limited conservator may object to elimination of powers, which could lead to a trial over the matter. So it may be beneficial to carefully examine how independent your loved one is before determining how much power to grant your conservator.