What Is The Free Britney Movement?
A hot topic in the media right now is the Free Britney Movement. If you have been following along you know that pop star, Britney Spears, is wanting out of the conservatorship that was set up for her thirteen years ago when she was deemed not capable of handling her affairs. Though the movement has gotten recognition in recent months, financial conservatorships are common. In Iowa, there are over 22,000¹ people in financial conservatorship.
What are financial conservatorships?
A financial conservatorship is a legal arrangement in which the court appoints someone to make legal decisions about the financial affairs of an adult who is deemed not capable of making the decisions themselves. Typically, this affects older adults with debilitating mental illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. The conservator has a legal duty to make decisions that are in the conservatee’s best interest. Financially, the conservator must make sure bills are paid, taxes are paid, and the conservatee has what they need for things like groceries and other daily necessities.
Financial Conservatorship Abuse
When a person is put in charge of another person’s finances, abuse is very possible. Britney Spears’s case brought to light the fact that there is a serious need to prevent conservatorship abuse. In Iowa, there have been documented cases of serious conservatorship abuse involving conservators misusing the assets of conservatees. When appointing a conservator, it is important to make sure this person is honest, caring, and financially responsible.
How can I prevent conservatorship abuse?
The easiest way to prevent conservatorship abuse is to have a plan. A revocable trust can eliminate the need for a conservatorship because there is a plan written out by the trustee on who will help them if they need it. If they do not have anyone, a bank can be named the trustee. Banks are a good choice because they can provide an impartial voice. Banks can also be good conservators or even have the power of attorney if needed. Check out our trust and estate services today.
Conservatorships are set up to protect loved ones but are very easily abused and can be avoided. It is best to make sure you have a plan in place if you ever needed help down the road. Banks are obligated to provide absolute loyalty to customers and can make very good trustees, conservators, and power of attorney if needed.
More questions on conservatorships or trusts?
Our Wealth Management Division is here for you!
Give us a call at 641.260.2GWM or contact our Sr. Trust Officer Keir Johnson to schedule an appointment.