Our estate plans at Smith Strong, PLC are designed to avoid the need for guardians and conservators, however, some individuals simply unable to plan in time, thus making guardianship and conservatorship hearing required. Let’s learn more.
Guardianship & Conservatorship—Defined
Guardianship or Conservatorship are established when a Virginia Circuit Court determines a person is unable to manage their financial affairs (Conservatorship, in other words conserving the money for their benefit) or health and wellbeing (Guardianship, or guarding over them as if they were your child).
A person must be declared incapacitated to have a guardian or conservator placed over them—and the same person may fill both of these positions.
Process for Appointment
Meet with an attorney, such as our firm, Smith Strong, PLC, to understand the process and pitfalls of the position, understand what you are getting into before you get into it! You may call attorney Van Smith’s assistant to schedule that meeting by calling 804.325.1245 or 757.941.4298.
Next, file a petition with the Virginia Circuit Court, citing the incapacity of the individual and need for a guardian or conservator.
Attend the hearing on determining incapacity, and subsequent appointment of the guardian or conservator. Cases to establish guardianship and conservatorship must be carefully laid out for the courts, typically including a medical expert to establish incapacity.
The proper Virginia Circuit Court may be where the incapacitated individual last lived independently or the city/county where their nursing home/assisted living facility is located.