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My uncle has been hospitalized and incapacitated. I need to…

Customer Question
My uncle has been...

My uncle has been hospitalized and incapacitated. I need to figure out how to get either a temporary POA or Letters of Testimentary I dont know how to get access to his banking accounts and see what bills he has on auto pay

Lawyer's Assistant: It can cost anywhere from $10 to $100, depending on the type of issue and how much of the Family Lawyer's time your question is expected to take (how complex and lengthy an answer you require).

I am not worried about the cost. I am unsure of what I need to do

Lawyer's Assistant: Can you tell me what state this is in? And just to clarify, what paperwork has been filed?

CA Nothing has been filed. I am going to talk to the hospital today to see about getting a letter from his doctor so that I can get the process started

Lawyer's Assistant: Have you talked to a lawyer yet?

NO, I am just starting out

Lawyer's Assistant: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?

No that is a;;

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Family Law
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12/2/2017
Family Lawyer: originallawyer, Family Law Attorney replied 4 months ago
originallawyer
originallawyer, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 905
Experience: 9+ years of experience in divorce, custody battles and mediation.
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I am sure I would need to get a temp POA or Temp Letter of Test. so that I can contact his bank to check on his mortgage and property taxes
I am worried about his bills.
Family Lawyer: originallawyer, Family Law Attorney replied 4 months ago

Unfortunately, you are in between a rock and a hard place. You can't get letters testamentary unless your uncle is deceased. And you cannot obtain a POA from a person who is incapacitated. He must be in sound mind and able to give you POA himself.

You would need to be appointed at least a Temporary Conservator of your uncle by a Judge in order to access his banking information at this time.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
OK Temp conservator. How do request that?
Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I would need to petition the court. I can try to get a letter from his doctor/the hospital. Is there anything else I should try to gather?
Family Lawyer: originallawyer, Family Law Attorney replied 4 months ago

This is a complex issue and it might be worth hiring an attorney to help you walk through this:

This link contains the information you will need to file in court:

http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/EN-InformationNeededConservatorshipCaseJan2017.pdf?1512247471864

This is the petition:

http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/gc111.pdf?1512247624834

These are other forms you may need:

http://www.courts.ca.gov/forms.htm?filter=GC

The following is information from the State of California about conservatorships found here: http://www.courts.ca.gov/selfhelp-conservatorship.htm

Setting up a conservatorship is a long and complex process. Before asking the court to appoint a conservator, the person asking for the conservatorship should be sure this is an appropriate arrangement for the proposed conservatee.

  • Starting the conservatorship. The process may be started by: the proposed conservator; the proposed conservatee; the spouse, domestic partner, a relative, or a friend of the proposed conservatee; another interested person; or an interested state or local agency, employee of the agency, or public officer. The process starts once all the necessary paperwork is filed with the court.
  • Completing the petition. The petition must include information about the proposed conservator and conservatee, relatives, and the petitioner (the person filing the case in court), and the reasons why a conservatorship is necessary. It must also explain why the possible alternatives to a conservatorship are not available in this case. Click for Information You Need for a Conservatorship Case -- it gives you a list of information and documents to gather before you fill out the petition and other forms.
  • Filing of the petition. The petitioner files the petition with the court clerk. He or she must pay the filing fee, plus a court investigator fee. A court date will be scheduled by the clerk. If the petitioner is low income, he or she may be able to ask the court for a fee waiver.
  • Informing the proposed conservatee. The petitioner must have someone else personally deliver a citation and a copy of the petition to the proposed conservatee.
  • Informing the proposed conservatee’s relatives. The petitioner must have someone else mail a written notice about the court hearing on the conservatorship petition, together with a copy of the petition, to the conservatee’s spouse or domestic partner and close relatives.
  • Investigation by a court investigator. A court investigator will talk to the proposed conservatee and others who may be familiar with the conservatee’s condition. The court will assess the conservatee’s estate for the cost of this investigation unless the court decides that the assessment would be a hardship for the conservatee.
  • Hearing. The proposed conservatee must go to the hearing unless he or she is excused because of illness. At the hearing, a judge will determine if everyone has been properly notified and if a lawyer needs to be appointed to represent the proposed conservatee. Once the judge is ready to make a decision, he or she may grant or deny the conservatorship. If the judge grants the petition, an order appointing the conservator will be filed and Letters of Conservatorship will be issued. If there is an estate, a surety bond must be filed unless the court orders the conservatee’s bank accounts to be frozen.

If a judge grants the conservatorship
The conservator must purchase a copy of the Handbook for Conservators from the court or download it at the link provided.

He or she can then assume the powers authorized under the law. Also, the conservator of the person, conservator of the estate, and limited conservator of the estate must attend the training for conservators offered by the court. Each conservator will have the ongoing duty to report to the court for regular reviews and to meet with the court investigator.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Since this sounds like a timely situation. Is there a way to request emergency / Temporary conservatorship be added? That way I could get access while the final docs are processed?
Family Lawyer: originallawyer, Family Law Attorney replied 4 months ago

Temporary conservatorship is about as fast as you can go. Courts tend to not move quickly in these cases to ensure they're absolutely necessary. As you can imagine, it's a big deal to give another person access to an elder's finances. So they proceed with caution.

You can alert the institutions you're concerned about that your uncle is currently hospitalized and that you're working on taking care of everything. They may put a note in his file that would explain any late payments.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thanks
Family Lawyer: originallawyer, Family Law Attorney replied 4 months ago

You are welcome. The form I attached above and here, http://www.courts.ca.gov/documents/gc111.pdf?1512247624834 specifically relates to temporary conservatorship, so it should get you where you need to go.

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