Conservatorship Jury Instructions – There Are No Judicial Council Instructions

In California there are proposed standard Judicial Council Civil Jury Instructions for LPS or Lanterman-Petris-Short Act conservatorships for people who are alleged to be gravely disabled due to a mental disorder/impairment or chronic alcoholism, but there are no Judicial Council proposed standard civil jury instructions for regular (non-LPS) civil conservatorships, which I have found to be at the very least surprising. A conservatorship is a court-ordered limitation or restriction on the conservatee’s liberties and decision making. As a feature in future blog posts I will be discussing specific conservatorship jury instructions.

California Probate Code §1800 importantly provides:

Section 1800.  It is the intent of the [California] Legislature in enacting this chapter [Part 3. Conservatorship – Chapter 1. Establishment of Conservatorship] to do the following:

(a) Protect the rights of persons who are placed under conservatorship.

(b) Provide that an assessment of the needs of the person is performed in order to determine the appropriateness and extent of a conservatorship and to set goals for increasing the conservatee’s functional abilities to whatever extent possible.

(c) Provide that the health and psychosocial needs of the proposed conservatee are met.

(d) Provide that community-based services are used to the greatest extent in order to allow the conservatee to remain as independent and in the least restrictive setting as possible.

(e) Provide that the periodic review of the conservatorship by the court investigator shall consider the best interests of the conservatee.

(f) Ensure that the conservatee’s basic needs for physical health, food, clothing, and shelter are met.

(g) Provide for the proper management and protection of the conservatee’s real and personal property.

Dave Tate, Esq. (San Francisco)
Trust, estate, conservatorship and elder litigation and administrations; civil, business, real estate, injury, product liability, public entity, healthcare, and professional liability litigation; dispute resolution and mediator; D&O, boards and committees, risk management and governance.