Conservatorship

Conservatorship

How to Get Help
Madge Bradley Courthouse
1409 Fourth Avenue (corner of Fourth Avenue/Ash Street)
San Diego, CA 92101
Next to PC-1 on the Fifth Floor
Hours of Operation:   Monday 11:30 AM- 3:00 PM
                                   Tuesday & Thursday 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM 
***Clinics are closed on court holidays.  Check court holidays here
Parking is a challenge.  Be prepared to pay for metered parking, pay to park in a lot, or park in a free space farther away and walk to the Courthouse. Assistance is provided on a first come, first served basis.  It is best to arrive early.

Type of Conservatorships We Help With

We help with the following items:
  • Completing the paperwork for limited and general conservatorships of the person.
  • Completing the paperwork for some conservatorships of the estate.  (We may be able to assist with small estates, when the estate is valued at less than $15,000 exclusive of the conservatee’s residence and the conservatee’s income is less than $2,000 a month exclusive of public benefits).
  • Completing the paperwork for a temporary conservatorship.
  • Exploring alternatives to conservatorship and referrals for Estate Planning (wills, trusts, powers of attorney, etc.)
  • Filing objections to a conservatorship petition.
  • Petitioning to terminate a conservatorship.
  • Petitioning to remove a conservator.
  • Completing the paperwork to add a co-conservator or appoint a successor conservator.

What We Can Do

If a conservatorship is appropriate for your situation, we can assist you in the following ways:

  • Provide a sample and instructions for completing the conservatorship paperwork.
  • Check and correct your paperwork before you file.
  • Provide guidance with serving Citation to the conservatee and Notice to the appropriate parties.
  • Check for defects in your petition after it is reviewed by the probate examiners.
  • Correct defects in your filing noted by the probate examiners.
  • Prepare you for your hearing.
  • Prepare or update your Order and Letters of Conservatorship.
  • Provide guidance on sending the Notice of Conservatee Rights and completing the Level of Care Plan after your petition is approved.
  • Answer questions you have about the conservatorship process.

If a conservatorship is appropriate for your situation, you should be prepared to visit the Conservatorship Clinic several times.  Petitioning for a conservatorship is a multi-step process.  You may come to the Clinic as many times as you need to.  Here is our recommended visit schedule.

  • Visit 1:  Obtain the sample, attachments, and conservatorship information.
    • On your own:  Complete the conservatorship forms by following the sample.  Have a doctor complete the “Capacity Declaration.”
  • Visit 2:  Have your completed paperwork checked by Clinic staff/volunteers and have any questions answered.  Receive “Ready to File” instructions.
    • On your own:  Finalize your forms and prepare them for filing.  File them with the clerk.
  • Visit 3:  This visit should be the same day or within a week of filing your forms.  Receive instructions on “How to Serve Notice” and “How to Serve Citation.”
    • On your own:  Have someone serve Notice and Citation.
  • Visit 4:  This visit should be when you file your Proofs of Service.  Check for defects in you petition and correct any defects.  Receive instructions on “How to Make a Court Appearance.”  Receive instructions on “Submitting the Proposed Orders and Letters.”
    • On your own:  Prepare your proposed Order and Letters and submit them to the clerk.  You are welcome to have the Clinic review your Order and Letters before you submit them.
  • Visit 5:  This visit should be after you receive your Order and within 30 days of your appointment hearing.  Receive “What to Do After You are Appointed Conservator” instructions and assistance with completing the “Notice of Conservatee Rights” and “Determination of Conservatee’s Appropriate Level of Care” plan.
    • On your own:  Complete and file your “Notice of Conservatee Rights” and “Determination of Conservatee’s Appropriate Level of Care” plan with the clerk.

Assistance for Related Problems

We do not assist with contested cases beyond filing the initial objections.  We generally do not assist with conservatorship of the estate cases, unless the estate is valued at less than $15,000 exclusive of the conservatee’s residence and the conservatee has income that is less than $2,000 a month exclusive of public benefits. We do not assist with LPS (mental health) Conservatorships, though we can provide general information and refer you to mental health services.  Only the Office of the Public Conservator can file LPS petitions (http://www.sdcounty.ca.gov/hhsa/programs/bhs/mental_health_services_adul...).


Elder/Dependant Abuse Restraining Orders:  If you need assistance with a restraining order to protect someone 65 or older or who is a defendant adult, please seek assistance at our Elder Abuse Restraining Order Clinics.

Self Help Documents/Pleadings

Link to the Conservatorship forms:  http://www.courts.ca.gov/1302.htm 
* Note:  Not all of the forms available will be relevant to your case.  Please seek assistance in the Clinic if you are unsure of which forms to file.

How to Get Information and Training

If you would like more information about the Conservatorship Clinic or would like a Legal Aid representative to speak to your organization about Conservatorships or Alternatives to Conservatorship, please fill out this form.

Get Involved

Our Conservatorship Clinic welcomes new volunteers.  However, we require a minimum volunteer commitment of one clinic per week for three months, as it takes time to get familiar with conservatorship forms and procedure.  If you are interested in volunteering with the Conservatorship Clinic, please click here.

For Attorneys you can get involved in taking a conservatorship case pro bono.  Click here for more information on pro bono case opportunities.