A conservatorship is a voluntary court supervised relationship in which a person who is mentally competent, but physically infirm, can apply to have someone appointed to care for the applicant’s Person, the applicant’s Estate, or both the Person and Estate.

A bond may be required in cases where a conservator of the estate is appointed.

After the application is filed, the Court will hold a hearing to determine whether (1) the applicant is physically infirm, (2) the application was voluntarily submitted, and (3) the conservator is suitable to serve. The applicant and the proposed conservator must both appear in Court at the hearing.

Upon Motion and for good cause shown, the Court may make confidential any file, record, application, account or paper in the possession of the Court that pertains to the conservatorship, except the index, docket and journal.

Items necessary to file a Conservatorship:

  1. Application for conservatorship is filed in the county where the applicant resides;
  2. A written statement from a physician that establishes that the conservatee is physically infirm; but, mentally competent;
  3. The base court cost deposit as listed in Appendix A of the Local Rules of Court; and
  4. All other requirements outlined on the Court’s Checklist found below.

Termination of a Conservatorship

A conservatorship can be terminated if the Court determines that the conservatee has become mentally incompetent, dies, or has submitted written notice of termination. A resignation by the conservator will also terminate the case; unless a successor is appointed.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Conservatorship?

A conservatorship is voluntary, unlike an involuntary guardianship. It is established by a mentally competent individual who is physically infirm and wants an individual (the “conservator”) chosen by the applicant (the “conservatee”) to assist with making decisions regarding the care for the person or the assets of the conservatee. The conservatee wants the conservator to the have the accountability provided through Court supervision.

How does it differ from a Durable Power of Attorney?

The durable power of attorney creates an agency relationship that extends beyond incompetency and is not directly supervised by the Court. The conservator is monitored by the Court as a guardian would be monitored and the conservatorship terminates if the conservatee becomes incompetent.

How is a Conservatorship Commenced and Terminated?

It is opened in the Probate Court of the county of residence of the conservatee by filing an application naming the conservator. A hearing will be held to determine if the physical infirmity exists and whether the selected appointee is suitable to serve. The conservatorship ends when the conservatee dies, becomes incompetent, the conservatee voluntarily requests that it be terminated, or the conservator resigns.

What Guidelines Apply to the Conservatorship?

Once the appointment is made, all of the laws and procedures applicable to a guardianship apply to the administration of a conservatorship.

Are there Standard Probate Forms Issued by the Supreme Court of Ohio for Use in Conservatorships?

There were three forms in the #20 series of the Supreme Court of Ohio Standard Probate Forms; however, those forms were withdrawn by the Supreme Court of Ohio effective September 1, 1991 and their use is no longer mandatory. Local forms are available at the bottom of this page.

Does the Applicant need an Attorney?

Due to the technical aspect of the legal process, the language, and the importance of the outcomes, the Probate Court strongly recommends that all Applicants seek legal counsel, but it is not required. Good legal advice will hasten the probate process and prevent costly mistakes.

Standard Probate Forms 

For all Standard Probate Forms click  here.

For Checklists and Forms exclusive to Shelby County Probate Court, see the forms section below.


Conservatorship Checklist

Fee Waiver Affidavit & Order

Application for Appointment of Conservator

Conservator’s Bond

Application for Release of Funds to Custodial Depository in Lieu of Bond

Entry Ordering Release Of Asset Directly To Custodial Depository To Be Held In Lieu Of Bond

Verification of Receipt and Deposit

Judgment Entry Setting Hearing on Application For Appointment Of Guardian

Judgment Entry Appointment of Conservator

Fiduciary’s Acceptance Conservator

Oath of Conservator

Letters of Conservatorship

Confidential Disclosure of Personal Identifiers (Form 45D)

Conservator’s Inventory

Conservator’s Account

Entry Setting Hearing on Account

Certificate of Service of Notice of Filing of Guardian’s Account

Affidavit of Service of Notice of Hearing

Application to Release Funds to Conservator

Application and Entry to Extend Time

Resignation of Fiduciary

Entry Accepting Resignation of Fiduciary

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