Reviewing the current guardianship system is the first step.
New Mexico has not yet made any changes to its guardianship system.
But it has started a process to bring about necessary changes.
According to a recent KRWG article titled “In Depth: New Mexico Supreme Court Forms Commission To Recommend Guardianship System Changes,” the Supreme Court appointed 16 people into a commission to study the current system and make improvements.
Why is this important?
They make health care and personal decisions for incapacitated individuals.
Conservators are court-appointed to manage property and financial affairs specifically for an incapacitated individual.
Who is considered incapacitated?
Those with traumatic brain injuries, developmental disabilities, dementia, mental illness and the like.
Basically, if you cannot receive and evaluate information regarding your personal, health care and financial decisions, then you are probably legally incapacitated.
Who is involved in this commission?
- Representatives from all three branches of government
- Advocates of rights for the disabled and elderly
- Estate planning attorneys and elder law attorneys with guardianship law experience
What will the commission do exactly?
They will gather public input through hearings.
They will make recommendations concerning changes to state statutes, program funding, court rules, administrative practices and any other improvements.
Does the commission have a timeline?
The New Mexico Supreme Court ordered the commission to make an initial status report by October 1 and to continue its work until completing a final report and recommendations.
The commission will be in effect until final recommendations and reports are completed.
After the reports are reviewed, changes may be made to the New Mexico guardianship system.
Remember: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” When making your financial, tax and estate plans, do not go it alone. Be sure to engage competent professional counsel.
For more information about estate planning in Overland Park, KS (and throughout the rest of Kansas and Missouri), visit our estate planning website and be sure to subscribe to our complimentary estate planning e-newsletter while you are there.
Reference: KRWG.org (April 7, 2017) “In Depth: New Mexico Supreme Court Forms Commission To Recommend Guardianship System Changes”