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What To Do When Adults Need Legal Protections

When an adult of any age has physical or mental impairments that prevent them from handling their own affairs, they may be vulnerable to abuse. Help provide protection to your loved one by establishing a guardianship and/or conservatorship. At Bowen Ten Long & Bal, PC, in Richmond, Virginia, we have years of experience helping families take care of their loved ones through estate planning, guardianships and conservatorships.

What Are Conservatorships And Guardianships?

In Virginia, there is a distinction between the guardianships and conservatorships. Deciding which to set up with the help of a lawyer depends on the needs of the adult.

  • Conservatorship: A conservator is appointed to control the financial affairs of the incapacitated adult.
  • Guardianship: A guardian is appointed to handle the personal affairs of the incapacitated adult, such as where they live and how their medical care is provided.

In most cases, an incapacitated adult’s conservator and guardian will be the same person. Because this affects the incapacitated adult’s  rights, it is critical to explore all the options with the help of a trusted lawyer.

When Is It Time To Establish Legal Protection For A Grown Child Or A Parent?

The reasons for establishing a guardianship and/or conservatorship can vary tremendously. Often, the parents of adult children who have disabilities do not realize that their authority to make decisions for their child ends once that child becomes 18 years old. You can start this process six months prior to your child’s 18th birthday.

Others seek these types of legal protections for an elderly parent who has developed dementia or another age-related condition that impairs their ability to make wise decisions. Our attorneys can help you decide when the time is right to have a guardian and/or conservator appointed for a parent or another loved one.

How Are Guardians And Conservators Paid For Their Time?

State law allows “reasonable compensation” for the services of guardians and conservators. In addition, if you pay an attorney to petition the court to become a guardian and/or conservator for an incapacitated adult, you are entitled to reimburse yourself for your expenses out of their assets. That makes the process much more affordable and accessible to everyone.

Talk To Us About Your Guardianship And Conservatorship Concerns

When you need to make big decisions about your loved one’s future, seek experienced legal representation. The guardianship and conservatorship process is complicated and must be completed properly in order to comply with Virginia laws.

At Bowen Ten Long & Bal, PC, we can help you decide on the most appropriate approach to your family situation. Contact us online or call 804-767-6850 to schedule your consultation with one of our experienced lawyers.