Advanced age or medical conditions can compromise someone’s ability to take care of themselves. Often, issues with financial matters are an early warning sign of someone’s declining ability to live independently.
It can be difficult for an older adult or someone struggling with organization and memory to pay their bills on time, balance their checkbooks and otherwise meet their recurring financial obligations. Especially if they must work with a fixed income and limited personal resources, missing a few payments could cause real financial hardship. The penalties and fees assessed could be enough to leave them with a budgetary shortfall, an issue that can quickly create snowballing financial problems.
A conservatorship involves the state appointing someone else to manage a vulnerable adult’s finances. In some cases, those responsibilities will fall to a professional, rather than a family member.
Colorado allows for the use of professional fiduciaries
It is common for the party assuming a crucial role for a vulnerable adult to be an individual that they know personally, but that isn’t always the best solution. Colorado law does allow for the appointment of a professional, like a corporate trustee or even a bank employee, to serve as a conservator.
Perhaps someone living in Colorado only has family in another state, or maybe they have a very difficult relationship with their children or other immediate family members. Perhaps their family members also have health issues or have proven themselves and untrustworthy in the past.
There are many reasons why an individual might require the support of a professional fiduciary. So long as the professional appointed is competent and capable of fulfilling their fiduciary duty to the adult in need of their services, they could easily fill the financial management role often held by family members.
What are the benefits of using a professional fiduciary?
There are several benefits of using a financial professional or a trustee as the conservator for an adult. Typically, if something happens to the individual serving as the conservator, there will be another co-worker capable of stepping up to fulfill their duties as a conservator.
They will also be subject to professional oversight, which may reduce the risk of misconduct, such as the misappropriation of someone’s resources. Finally, a professional background in finance may mean that they are better able to manage and preserve the assets owned by a vulnerable adult.
Considering all of your options when your family starts thinking about a conservatorship for a loved one can help you arrive at the best solution for your situation.