Under California law, a private conservator or guardian may be appointed by a court to care for a person who is unable to provide properly for his or her personal needs or is substantially unable to manage his or her own financial resources. The law was amended recently (Chapter 409, Stats. of 1999) to require courts to appoint only private conservators or guardians who are registered with the Statewide Registry of Private Conservators and Guardians in the California Department of Justice.
Through the new Statewide Registry, judges will have access to centralized information, including track records in other counties, before deciding to appoint someone as a private conservator or guardian. Prior to the establishment of the Statewide Registry, private professional conservators or guardians only registered with the county clerk for the local jurisdiction in which they sought to be appointed. Now, these private conservators or guardians must register with the California Department of Justice and renew the registration every three years.
State law specifies that all information in the Statewide Registry is confidential, except for the individual's name, the fact that he or she is registered, and the person's education and professional experience.