Conservatorships and guardianships are a good way to render help to people who cannot do it for themselves. The idea of a caretaker for people with mental disabilities or a lack of legal age is an excellent one, although a conservatorship does not mean a person is completely incapable.
What does a conservatorship mean under Connecticut law?
A conservator may be appointed if a person is or is expected to have a mental disability due to age or infirmity that would prevent the person from handling their own personal or financial affairs. Medical records may be used to help create a conservatorship, but a recent case demonstrates they cannot be released without permission.
What are the specifics of the case?
A Connecticut attorney is facing a two-year suspension of his license after a former client sued him for malpractice. The suit triggered a series of events including the unauthorized release of medical records to demonstrate that the plaintiff had been under a conservatorship.
Why was this against the law and professional ethics?
Medical and legal records are confidential under federal law, and a patient or client must expressly allow their release. A conservatorship, especially if it has been terminated, may not be used to demonstrate an inability beyond the specific requirements of the arrangement.
How can I make sure a conservatorship is legal?
A probate court is the authority that approves conservatorships and guardianships for disabled adults and underage children. Any party to probate proceedings is entitled to an attorney, who can offer legal representation and advice during the process.