Sunday, May 2, 2010

Legalized Elder Abuse - Guardianships and Conservatorships

The American legal system has established “guardianships” for the specific purpose of protecting vulnerable individuals–called “wards”–when a judge or judicial officer determines that the ward’s decisionmaking capability is so impaired that another person–the “guardian”—needs to be given the right to make these decisions. A guardianship is particularly appropriate for wards who are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease and related dementia, as well as advanced alcoholism and similar afflictions that render the person unable to care for his or her health and other needs. A “conservatorship,” twin to the guardianship, is set up to conserve the ward’s assets; the conservator acts as a custodian.

The legal obligations of the guardian and conservator. As defined above, these legal vehicles seem completely sensible and necessary. After all, people who are so incapacitated that their decisionmaking is unreliable obviously need professional assistance; left unprotected, their health and wealth are at risk. The law considers the connection between the guardian (or conservator) and the ward to be “fiduciary” in nature, a legal relationship of confidence or trust between two or more parties. Indeed, for legal purposes, a “fiduciary” duty requires the highest possible standard of care. It recognizes that the ward needs to have utmost confidence, reliance and trust in the guardian or conservator, whose aid or protection is essential. The fiduciary, therefore, is required to act at all times for the sole benefit and interests of the ward, with absolute loyalty to those interests.

The reality of guardianships and conservatorships. Unfortunately, vulnerable individuals are easy targets for the unscrupulous. Equally unfortunate is the fact that the legal system, having established these processes, frequently fails to supervise how they actually work.

Full Article and Source:
Legalized Elder Abuse - Guardianships and Conservatorships


StandUp said...

Good article and people should read NASGA's "An Open Letter to Congress and the White House" for more.

Sue said...

"Equally unfortunate is the fact that the legal system, having established these processes, frequently fails to supervise how they actually work"

Unfortunate? Follow the $ sign - who is profiting?

QUESTION: Who lobbies the legislators who finalize the intent, the "wording" of the laws?

ANSWER: The probate mob that profits! Oh, my gosh, what a surprise!

FOR EXAMPLE: In Illinois, a physcially disabled person and/or a person who is incapacited is prime meat for the guardianship vultures.

And, what is even more alarmning, no specifics were written into the law or guidelines to describe or list the disabilities.

And, add more alarms - a temporary physical condidtion still sets a person up for seizing by the guardinship racket.

Wake up folks, all of this is by design.

IF you have any of the following:

1) income,
2) personal property
3) real estate
4)a bank balance
5) potential or future recipient of inheritance
6) judgment from a civil action
7) any source where $$$ is or will directed to you

YOU ARE AT RISK to become a ward of the state, whether you are married, single, young or old!

Anonymous said...

Legalized elder abuse is spot on!

Anonymous said...

Great article - tells it like it is and very comprehensively.

Steve said...

The very laws made to protect are used to plunder!

Anonymous said...

The article title is right on.
LEGALIZED Elder Abuse... that is exactly what it is!