Estate of Jeff Bently -v- Ruby Bell Bently, that a conservator could file for separate maintenance and divorce.
The husband was unable to care for his
own affairs and had been separated from his wife of 20-years since 2008. After
a conservator was appointed, the conservator promptly filed for separate
maintenance; she could have just as easily filed for divorce.
the wife argued that the Kent County Family Court Judge did not have the
authority to order a judgment of separate maintenance because her husband lacked
the capacity to consent to the proposed property division. In affirming the
family court, the Court of Appeals held that the conservatorship statute and
applicable court rules provide for a conservator to file law suits and defend
law suits on behalf of the protected individual, without
Based on a plain reading of these applicable statutes and
court rules, the Court of Appeals held that a conservator, and presumably a
guardian as well, can prosecute a divorce proceeding on behalf of the ward.
Conservator Can File Divorce on Behalf of Ward