Guardianships, conservatorships, elder life planning and elder abuse

Guardians and Conservatorships

The courts will appoint a qualified person as a guardian to make important life decisions when a person is no longer able to make those decisions on their own behalf.  The court will also appoint a conservator when appropriate to handle the financial affairs of a person who is no longer able to do so for themselves.  If a parent or loved one becomes unable to take care of their own personal and financial affairs, we can assist in having a court monitored guardianship and conservatorship set up to care for that person.  Both the guardianship and conservatorship require regular reports to the court and the court reviews the financial affairs closely to make sure that the “Ward” (the person for whom the guardianship or conservatorship is established), is not being taken advantage of.

As your parents or loved ones age, we can assist in advanced planning, which is some cases can avoid the cost and expense of the formal guardianship or conservatorship.  A Revocable Living Family Trust is one way of dealing with this situation and this is one of the situations where the Living or Revocable Trust may be appropriate.

Elder Abuse

Oregon has laws dealing with mistreatment of seniors.  The statute covers physical abuse, active neglect, passive neglect, abandonment and psychological abuse.  It also limits sweepstake solicitation of senior citizens.  The action for financial abuse may be brought by a person who is 65 years of age or older, by an incapacitated person or by a guardian, conservator or attorney-in-fact for the incapacitated person.  If a friend, relative or loved one is subject to any of the above types of abuse, we would be able to help you take appropriate action to protect your relative or loved one.  In addition to the civil remedies, there are criminal sanctions for elder abuse.