What are the differences between power of attorney vs conservatorship?
This article quickly covers:
Let’s dig in.
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Let’s compare power of attorney vs conservatorship.
And what you can expect from a power of attorney vs conservatorship.
A power of attorney gives someone the power to act for another person.
The person who gets to make decisions for you is the agent.
The person who needs someone to make decisions for them is the principal.
The agent can make decisions about:
In the event of illness or disability, power of attorney can sign financial documents.
A conservatorship is a form of legal guardianship of an adult.
A conservatorship gives someone legal authority over various aspects of someone’s life.
Conservatorship gest granted when the person becomes incapacitated.
This gets ordered when there is mental incapacitation.
But hardly ever if there is only physical incapacity.
Incapacitation needs to get determined by a doctor before the judge grants conservatorship.
Conservatorship gest appointed by the courts via a court order.
Meaning a judge appoints a conservatorship.
A conservatorship is responsible for the care and finances of the person they are taking care of.
A financial conservatorship means that you make sure that the conservatee’s:
A conservator has a fiduciary responsibility to act in the conservatee’s best interest.
A conservator has to keep detailed records of all decisions being made.
And they have to present those decisions to the court.
Related: What An Executor Cannot Do
A conservatorship is similar to a power of attorney.
Both empower the agent to make decisions for someone else about:
But there are differences between power of attorney vs conservatorship.
The difference between power of attorney vs conservatorship is how the agent gets appointed.
A power of attorney gets appointed by the individual.
The principal can choose when the power of attorney goes into effect.
And they can choose what decision-making authority the agent has.
But a conservatorship gets appointed by the probate courts.
And the principal has no say in what authority the conservatorship has.
Related: Consequences Of Not Probating A Will
A conservator’s authority is more expansive than a power of attorney’s.
Conservatorship gets appointed via a court order.
This means that even third parties have to recognize their authority.
But the conservator’s decisions are subject to the court’s approval.
For a conservatorship vs POA, the power of attorney offers the principal more:
For power of attorney vs conservatorship, the POA costs the principal a lot less.
That’s because conservatorship comes with court fees.
Conservatorship overrides a power of attorney because conservatorship is a court order.
Conservatorship overrides a financial power of attorney if there is a conservator.
But if there is not a conservator, the conservatorship does not override the financial power of attorney.
In short, a power of attorney is the same thing as conservatorship.
The only difference in power of attorney vs conservatorship is how the agent gets appointed.
Conservatorship gest appointed by the courts with a court order.
Power of attorney gets appointed by the principal with a power of attorney.
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