Whether you just discovered that your elderly mother has been having serious financial problems, or a grown child got hurt in a car accident and now needs round-the-clock medical care, you may need to apply for a Colorado conservatorship.
This kind of arrangement can be enacted to protect a person whom the court considers incapable of managing financial and personal affairs and assets. The conservator – the person who takes over this responsibility — should understand the challenges and needs of the position. Here are 5 key facts about how the process works.
Important Fact #1: In Colorado, you must be at least 21 years old to serve as a conservator.
Even if you’re capable, wealthy and trained – and you have a unique and intimate relationship with the person who needs help — you cannot take on this role as a minor.
Important Fact #2: As a conservator, you do not have the right to manage the health and welfare of the ward; that role, if it exists, belongs to the person’s guardian.
Conservatorship is different than guardianship. As a conservator, you are only responsible for the person’s assets, not for his or her personal welfare or medical needs.
Important Fact #3: Your responsibilities, in terms of paperwork, can be quite involved.
You need to submit an annual report, also known as a Conservator’s Report, that describes the year’s transactions as well as the financial state of the conservatorship. You are also responsible for filing an Inventory and Financial Plan within 60 days of accepting the Conservator position appointment. Additionally, it is your job to maintain all records of transactions occurring on behalf of the conservatorship and honor official requests to review key documents. Tax returns must be filed for the conservatorship, if they’re applicable to the assets and income of the ward.
Important Fact #4: As a Conservator, you are entitled to financial compensation, within reason, for your time spent in this position.
Maintain all records of your financial compensation, and include it as income on your income tax return.
Important Fact #5: You do not have to manage the conservatorship on your own.
You have the right to hire attorneys, accountants, investors and other professionals to assist you in managing the conservatorship. Include any costs for hiring such experts in your Inventory and Financial Plan that you provide upon accepting your role as Conservator. These costs and expenses should be covered via the conservatorship.
Call our experienced legal team to establish an effective Colorado conservatorship; we can give you back peace of mind and help you feel in control of your situation.