There are certain rules that address guardianships and conservatorships. A guardianship is the responsibility to care for another individual and make decisions about his or her healthcare and placement. According to the Motley Fool, the authority bestowed upon a guardian can only be given by the court. In contrast, a conservatorship is an authority bestowed by the court on someone to help maintain, manage and protect the assets of an incapacitated individual.

In some cases, you may only have a guardianship, and there may not be a need for a conservatorship. In other cases, you may need a conservatorship and not a guardianship. If somebody has effective healthcare powers of attorney, a guardianship may not be needed. The same goes for an effective, durable financial power of attorney. According to Parent Giving, if somebody has an effective and durable financial power of attorney, the appointment of conservatorship may not be necessary. In contrast, if somebody is incapacitated and has never created powers of attorney or he or she is dealing with other issues that may demand the court supervision of his or her finances, then it is important to consider a guardianship or conservatorship.

There is a lot of thought that goes into whether or not a guardianship or conservatorship is needed or it is appropriate. Those are decisions that take time to think through. One thing to remember with guardianships and conservatorships is that there will be ongoing court oversight. This means that there will be administrative duties and costs that are impossible to avoid. So before pursuing a guardianship for conservatorship, seek some legal advice and be prepared before going into court to ask for the appointment of a guardianship or conservatorship.