What Happens to a Conservatorship When the Protected Person Dies?

What happens when a protected person dies? Is the conservatorship proceeding automatically over? Does the conservator need to do anything else?

Minnesota Statute 524.5-431 addresses these questions. It provides, in pertinent part:

(a) A conservatorship terminates upon the death of the protected person or upon order of the court. Unless created for reasons other than that the protected person is a minor, a conservatorship created for a minor also terminates when the protected person attains majority or is emancipated.

(b) Upon the death of a protected person, the conservator shall conclude the administration of the estate by distribution of probate property to the personal representative of the protected person’s estate. The conservator shall distribute nonprobate property to the successor in interest. The conservator shall file a final report and petition for discharge no later than 30 days after distribution, and notice of hearing for allowance of said report shall be given to interested persons and to the personal representative of the protected person’s estate.

Therefore, what the conservator must do is: Distribute the protected person’s property to the appropriate person. Probate property goes to the personal representative (probate proceedings should be commenced by a family member or other appropriate person in order to get the PR appointed) and nonprobate property goes to the appropriate successor in interest. The conservator then prepares a final account/report and files it with the Court along with a Petition for Discharge. The Court then sets a hearing date on the Petition and the Conservator provides notice of the hearing to all Interested Persons. After the hearing the Court issues an Order discharging the Conservator.

If you have questions about this issues, or conservatorships in general, please contact experienced conservatorship attorney Cindi Spence Matt.


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