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House Bill 4909-4912
Specifically, HB 4909-4912 will:
- Require a judge to justify on the record why a family member who is willing to serve as a guardian is not suitable. While the law already provides that family members have priority, the modification serves as an additional safeguard to ensure family members get due consideration;
- Eliminate a judge’s ability to prevent a challenge to an appointed guardianship/conservatorship for up to six months;
- Require guardian and conservator certification and increase visitation frequency;
- Establish a clear asset/income threshold for appointment of a conservator;
- Set standards for the Guardian ad Litem report to the court;
- Protect personal items of sentimental value from being discarded;
- Establish a right to attorney throughout the proceedings;
- Establish additional protections for individuals before removing them from their homes;
- Improve the basic standard for medical testimony; and more.
“These bills establish basic dignity in our State’s guardianship and conservatorship oversight. This package is fundamentally about protecting and securing continued rights for some of the most vulnerable adults in our state,” said Nessel. “Our guardianship and conservatorship system must serve to protect our residents, and I applaud the House of Representatives for advancing these recommended reforms from our Elder Abuse Task Force.”
In addition, HB 5047 would establish an Office of State Guardian (OSG), which would be responsible for overseeing professional guardians and professional conservators.