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Guardianships and Conservatorships in New Jersey

Bratton Law Group Protects the Unique Legal Needs of Guardians and Conservators in New Jersey

While we all hope to stay sharp into old age, sometimes a concerned party needs to step in. Guardianships and conservatorships become necessary when an adult, child, spouse, or other loved one can no longer make decisions on their own. This can happen through illness, accident, longstanding disability, or old age. Both guardianships and conservatorships legally give a person (or a group of people) the ability to guide a person’s health, safety, and care when they need outside protection. Ab experienced New Jersey estate and elder law care expert at Bratton Law Group Firm helps people obtain the legal authority to make decisions for a loved one, included their financial and health decisions.

What Are Guardianships?

A guardian has the most say over decisions involving a loved one, including legal authority over the loved one’s care and financial assets. The guardian decides on living situation, healthcare needs, care set-up, allocation of assets, and other essential responsibilities.

What is Conservatorship? 

A conservatorship is more limited than a guardianship. Conservatorship solely grants the conservator authority over the protected person’s financial affairs and property.

Guardianships and conservatorships can be set up in a few different ways.

Permanent – Permanent guardianships and conservatorships exist indefinitely until the court decides to end the relationship.

Temporary – Temporary guardianships and conservatorships specify a period of time (i.e., three months, two years) and automatically end when that period expires. This is often used for people recuperating from illness or injury.

Joint – A joint guardianships or conservatorship allows multiple people or agencies to decide for the protected person.

What is a Guardian or Conservator responsible for?

A guardian or conservator is responsible for making decisions for the protected person. While the protected person can be involved as much as the situation allows, the guardian or conservator has a final decision-making power. It is the guardian or conservator’s has a final decision-making power. It is the guardian or conservator’s responsibility to advocate for the protected person’s best interests, even if that means using some of the protected person’s assets for care.

Should I seek a power of attorney instead?

While a complex process that benefits from a knowledgeable legal professional, a power of attorney is a simpler way to legally make decisions for another person. If a person can make decisions on their own while signing the documents, a power of attorney can make decisions on their own while signing the documents, a power of attorney can give another party legal decision-making authority without the court’s involvement. When a power of attorney is not appropriate, guardianship or conservatorship is the next step.

Schedule a Consultation for Guardianship and Conservatorship Advice

When considering becoming a guardian or conservator, experienced counsel from Bratton Law Group Firm can provide you with a necessary protection and legal advice. With convenient location in Haddonfield, Ewing, NJ, and Philadelphia, PA, our New Jersey estate and elder law care experts can help navigate the guardianship or conservatorship process. Call our offices at 856 770 2744 or contact us through our website for a confidential consultation.