Free Britney Spears – Or Move Her Conservatorship to Oregon! The Intricacies of Conservatorship Transfers.

 In Trusts & Estates

If you follow pop culture, you may have noticed the recent focus on conservatorships.  From the documentary “Framing Britney Spears” to Netflix’s “I Care A Lot,” recent coverage of these proceedings have revealed some of the intricacies and complexities (in addition to some very dark aspects) involved in a conservatorship, which is designed to promote the financial and personal well-being of the conservatee.  The legal process of conservatorships can become even more complicated when it is in the best interests of the conservatee to relocate to or seek medical treatment in another state. Think, for example, if Britney Spears decided she wanted to move from California to Oregon!

What if Britney Spears decided she wanted to move from California to Oregon?

Britney Spears Conservatorship, Free Britney

Due to proximity and other economic factors, many individuals are moving between Oregon and California.  When a conservatee moves from California to Oregon, there are a number of procedural hoops to jump through to transfer the conservatorship.  The California Conservatorship Jurisdiction Act (CCJA) governs transfer of a conservatorship to or from California and is a more detailed version of the Uniform Adult Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Jurisdiction Act (UAGPPJA), which has been adopted by forty-five states (including California, through the CCJA, and Oregon).

Transferring a conservatorship out of California:

It requires the filing of a petition, which should address three factors:

  1. Whether the conservatee is living in another state or is reasonably expected to reside in another state
  2. Whether there is any evidence suggesting that the transfer would not be in the conservatee’s best interest
  3. Whether the plans for the care of the conservative is reasonable and sufficient

If the court determines the factors have been met, and it is satisfied that the court in the other state will accept the conservatorship, it will issue a provisional order to terminate the California conservatorship.  This order becomes final once all required documents, including a full accounting, have been filed and a provisional order accepting the conservatorship is issued by a court in the new state.

To transfer a conservatorship to Oregon:

A conservator or fiduciary must file a petition for transfer in the Oregon Court along with a certified copy of the other court’s provisional order of transfer.  Once a petition for transfer is filed, an Oregon court will issue an order provisionally accepting the transfer, unless the court determines that the transfer would not be in the best interests of the protected person or if the proposed fiduciary is ineligible for appointment in Oregon.  No later than 90 days after issuance of the order, the court must then determine whether the transferred proceedings need to be modified in any way to comply with Oregon law.  If no modification is required, the court will issue a final order completing the transfer.

Family members and other interested persons have the ability, under both California law and Oregon law, to object to the transfer of a conservatorship.  When objections are properly raised, the transfer proceeding may become adversarial and require a hearing.  

Another scenario that may arise in a conservatorship is when a conservatee would like to seek medical treatment or temporarily reside in another state.  California allows out-of-state conservatorships to be registered in California, which may be appropriate where the conservatee is not planning to relocate but will be in the state for an extended period.

The process of transferring or registering a conservatorship can be complex. 

We have attorneys licensed to practice in both California and Oregon (as well as Washington, Florida, and New York) and who have experience transferring and registering conservatorships, and with conservatorship and guardianship litigation.  If you need assistance with a conservatorship, we would be happy to advise you in all phases of the process.  Contact our office for a complimentary 15-minute consultation or visit www.catalystlawllc.com for additional information.  

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