A Guardianship is a legal entity that gives someone else (the Guardian) control over the Ward’s person. The Guardian can direct where the Ward will live and whether the Ward will move to a more restrictive environment. The Guardian will also make decisions about the Ward’s medical treatment and educational or vocational services provided.

To establish a Guardianship, you must demonstrate to the Court that the individual is not competent. The individual could be someone with a brain injury or dementia, someone with a cognitive disability, or a special-needs child who is turning 18. Minor children who are being cared for by someone other than their parents also need a guardianship.



A Conservatorship is a legal entity that gives someone else (the Conservator) control over the Ward’s financial affairs. The Conservator handles the income and pays the bills of the Ward.

Mental incapacity or age can be the triggering factor for a Conservatorship. A Conservatorship is appropriate when someone is no longer able to handle their own finances. Children who receive assets (often through inheritance) also need a Conservatorship until they turn 18.

The probate attorneys at Abendroth Russell Barnett Law Firm can answer your questions help you establish a Guardianship or a Conservatorship.