Power of Attorney and Conservatory

What is the difference between a Power of Attorney and Conservatory?

It can be difficult to know a loved one who is unable to care for themselves. As such, there are complex situations where a power of attorney or a conservatorship can be useful. A power of attorney is a deliberate and conscious choice. A power of attorney is a legal document that legally allows someone else the authorization to act on the behalf of the person requesting it.

According to the Tennessee Legislature, “a petition for the appointment of a conservatory may be filed by any person having knowledge of the circumstances necessitating the appointment of a conservator.”

Therefore, if you know someone who needs a conservatory, you may file a formal court proceeding to be considered for the role of conservator. Any person who has a conservatory over another is called a conservator. If you are to be considered, the court must find that the party in need is incapacitated and requires self-care. The conservator can manage the person’s financial affairs or make medical decisions on their behalf. Conservators are also required to file annual reports in regards to the person’s status and finances.


Power of Attorney Considerations

The court may consider the existence of the Power of Attorney before appointing a conservator if someone files a petition for a conservatory where an attorney’s authority is already in place. As such, the court is likely to honor the POA, but it may also grant a conservatory to assist the individual with needs not covered by the Power of Attorney. In addition, a conservator may challenge a POA on the grounds that the agent is not managing the assets of the individual properly.

Can a non-family member become a conservator?

There may be cases where a non-relative may enter the role of a conservator. For that reason, there are many scenarios where a non-family member might act as a conservator over someone. Some people are simply alone. Other people may have never created a family. Therefore, it is also possible that all other relatives have passed on.

For those who have never created a family of their own, it is not uncommon for them to outlive their relatives. As a result, there may also be no one in the family who wants to take the role of conservator. Even so, there may not be any person who is trustworthy enough to do so. It is an unfortunate situation, but entirely possible.

What can a conservator do?

Conservators have the power to make all decisions for another person including financial and medical decisions. Therefore, it is a powerful tool with a great responsibility. In light of this, the court will not jump straight to giving a conservator full powers, for instance. By the same token, it will consider what less-restrictive alternative there may be in order to help the person in need.

Is a Power of Attorney Revocable?

A revocable attorney’s power, or POA, is a legal document appointing an agent or in-fact attorney to handle transactions on your behalf. Any trustworthy person or institution you choose can be your handler. Most states require written POA documents and specify certain requirements for the creation and revoking of POAs.

Power of Attorney in Tennessee

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If you need guidance in creating a power of attorney or conservatorship, contact us and schedule a consultation.

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