Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter VI. Protection of Property of Incapacitated, Disappeared or Detained Individuals.


§ 21–2051. Protective proceedings.

(a) Upon petition and after notice and hearing in accordance with the provisions of this subchapter, the court may appoint a conservator or make any other protective order for cause as provided in this section.

(b) Appointment of a conservator or other protective order may be made in relation to the estate and affairs of an individual, if the court determines that either the individual is an incapacitated individual according to section 21-2011(11), has disappeared, is being detained by a foreign power, or is being held hostage by someone other than a foreign power and:

(1) The individual has property that will be wasted or dissipated unless property management is provided; or

(2) Money is needed for the support, care, and welfare of the individual or those entitled to the individual’s support and protection is necessary or desirable to obtain and provide money.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Mar. 24, 1998, D.C. Law 12-81, § 14(t), 45 DCR 745.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2051.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2044 and § 21-2056.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-301 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2052. Original petition for appointment or protective order.

(a) The individual to be protected or any person who is interested in the estate, affairs, or welfare of the individual may petition for the appointment of a conservator or for any other appropriate protective order.

(b) The petition must set forth, to the extent known:

(1) The name, address, and interest of the petitioner;

(2) The name, age, residence, and address of the individual to be protected;

(3) The name and address of the guardian, if any;

(4) The name and address of the nearest relative known to the petitioner;

(5) A general statement of the individual’s property with an estimate of the value of that property, including any compensation, insurance, pension, or allowance to which the individual is entitled; and

(6) The reason why appointment of a conservator or other protective order is necessary, stated with sufficient particularity as to enable the court to determine what class of examiner and visitor should examine the individual alleged to be incapacitated. If the appointment of a conservator is requested, the petition shall also set forth the name and address of the person whose appointment is sought and the basis of any claim to priority for appointment.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2052.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-304 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2053. Notice.

(a) On a petition for appointment of a conservator or other protective order, the requirements for notice described in section 21-2042 apply, but if the individual to be protected has disappeared, has been detained by a foreign power, or is being held hostage by someone other than a foreign power, notice to the individual must be given by publication as provided in section 21-2031(b)(3).

(b) Notice of a hearing on a petition for an order subsequent to appointment of a conservator or other protective order shall be given to the protected individual, any conservator of the protected individual’s estate, and any other person as ordered by the court.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2053.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-305 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2054. Procedure concerning hearing and order on original petition.

(a) Upon receipt of a petition for appointment of a conservator or other protective order, the court shall set a date for a hearing. Unless the individual to be protected has chosen counsel, the court shall appoint an attorney to represent the individual. Except where the incapacity is alleged to be by disappearance or detention by a foreign power, the court may appoint an appropriately qualified examiner who shall submit a written report to the court. Except where the incapacity is alleged to be by disappearance or detention by a foreign power or someone other than a foreign power, the court may appoint a visitor who shall submit a written report to the court. If an examiner and a visitor are appointed for an individual, the examiner and visitor shall be separate persons.

(b) The court may utilize the services of additional visitors to evaluate the condition of the allegedly incapacitated individual and to make appropriate recommendations to the court.

(c) In the case of an individual whose incapacity is alleged to arise out of an intellectual disability, preference is for the appointment of an examiner and visitor who are qualified developmental disability professionals and who can collectively give a complete social, psychological, and medical evaluation of the individual. When the individual alleged to have an intellectual disability has a current comprehensive evaluation or habilitation plan, the plan shall be presented as evidence to the court. When a plan exists but has not been updated within 6 months prior to the hearing, preference is for an update of the plan as part of the examination conducted by the examiner and visitor.

(d) For other individuals alleged to be incapacitated, any current social, psychological, medical, or other evaluation used for diagnostic purposes or in the development of a current plan of treatment, or any current plan of treatment shall be presented as evidence to the court.

(e) An individual alleged to be incapacitated shall be present at the hearing unless good cause is shown for the absence. The individual shall be represented by counsel and is entitled to present evidence and cross-examine witnesses, including any court-appointed examiner or visitor. The hearing may be closed if the individual alleged to be incapacitated or counsel for the individual so requests.

(f) Any person may apply for permission to participate in the proceeding and the court may grant the request, with or without hearing, upon determining that the best interest of the individual to be protected will be served. The court may attach appropriate conditions to the permission.

(g) After the hearing, upon finding that a basis for the appointment of a conservator or other protective order has been established, the court shall make an appointment or other appropriate protective order.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Sept. 22, 1989, D.C. Law 8-34, § 2(i), 36 DCR 5035; Feb. 22, 1990, D.C. Law 8-63, § 2, 36 DCR 7718; May 15, 1990, D.C. Law 8-123, § 2, 37 DCR 2085; Apr. 24, 2007, D.C. Law 16-305, § 35(c)(3), 53 DCR 6198; Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-169, § 21(h)(4), 59 DCR 5567.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2054.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-305, in subsec. (c), substituted “individual alleged to have mental retardation” for “alleged mentally retarded individual”.

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-169, in (c), substituted “an intellectual disability” for “mental retardation” in the first and second sentences and substituted “qualified developmental disability professional” for “qualified mental retardation professional” in the first sentence.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-306 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).

Section 35 of D.C. Law 19-169 provided that no provision of the act shall impair any right or obligation existing under law.


§ 21–2055. Permissible court orders.

(a) The court shall exercise the authority conferred in this subchapter to encourage the development of maximum self-reliance and independence of a protected individual and make protective orders only to the extent necessitated by the protected individual’s mental and adaptive limitations and other conditions warranting the procedure.

(b) The court has the following powers that may be exercised directly or through a conservator with respect to the estate and business affairs of a protected individual:

(1) While a petition for appointment of a conservator or other protective order is pending and after preliminary hearing and without notice to others, the court may preserve and apply the property of the individual to be protected as may be required for the support of the individual or dependents of the individual.

(2) After hearing and upon determining that a basis for an appointment or other protective order exists with respect to an individual, the court, for the benefit of the individual and members of the individual’s immediate family, has all the powers over the estate and business affairs that the individual could exercise if present and not incapacitated, except the power to make a will. Those powers include, but are not limited to:

(A) Power to obtain medical records for purposes of application for governmental entitlements or private benefits;

(B) Power to make gifts;

(C) Power to convey or release contingent and expectant interests in property, including marital property rights and any right of survivorship incident to a joint tenancy or tenancy by the entirety;

(D) Power to exercise or release powers held by the protected individual as trustee, personal representative, custodian for a minor, conservator, or donee of a power of appointment;

(E) Power to enter into contracts;

(F) Power to create revocable or irrevocable trusts of property of the estate that may extend beyond the incapacity or life of the protected individual;

(G) Power to exercise options of the protected individual to purchase securities or other property;

(H) Power to exercise rights to elect options and change beneficiaries under insurance and annuity policies and to surrender the policies for their cash value; and

(I) Power to exercise any right to an elective share in the estate of the individual’s deceased spouse and to renounce or disclaim any interest by testate or intestate succession or by inter vivos transfer.

(c) The court may exercise or direct the exercise of the following powers only if satisfied, after notice and hearing, that it is in the best interest of the protected individual and that the individual either is incapable of consenting or has consented to the proposed exercise of power:

(1) To exercise or release powers of appointment of which the protected individual is donee;

(2) To renounce or disclaim interests;

(3) To make gifts in trust or otherwise exceeding 20% of any year’s income of the estate; and

(4) To change beneficiaries under insurance and annuity policies.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2055.

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-307 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2011, § 21-2069, § 21-2071, and § 21-2072.


§ 21–2056. Protective arrangements and single transactions authorized.

(a) If it is established in a proper proceeding that a basis exists as described in section 21-2051 for affecting the property and business affairs of an individual, the court, without appointing a conservator, may authorize, direct, or ratify any transaction necessary or desirable to achieve any security, service, or care arrangement meeting the foreseeable needs of the protected individual. Protective arrangements include payment, delivery, deposit, or retention of funds or property; sale, mortgage, lease, or other transfer of property; entry into an annuity contract, a contract for life care, a deposit contract, or a contract for training and education; or addition to or establishment of a suitable trust.

(b) If it is established in a proper proceeding that a basis exists as described in section 21-2051 for affecting the property and business affairs of an individual, the court, without appointing a conservator, may authorize, direct, or ratify any contract, trust, or other transaction relating to the protected individual’s property and business affairs if the court determines that the transaction is in the best interest of the protected individual.

(c) Before approving a protective arrangement or other transaction under this section, the court shall consider the interests of creditors and dependents of the protected individual and, in view of the incapacity, disappearance, or detention by a foreign power, whether the protected individual needs the continuing protection of a conservator. The court may appoint a special conservator to assist in the accomplishment of any protective arrangement or other transaction authorized under this section who shall have the authority conferred by the order and serve until discharged by order after report to the court of all matters done pursuant to the order of appointment.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2056.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2011.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-308 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2057. Who may be appointed conservator; priorities.

(a) The court may appoint a person or a corporation with general power to serve as trustee or conservator of the estate of a protected individual. The following are entitled to consideration for appointment in the order listed:

(1) A conservator, guardian of property, or other like fiduciary appointed or recognized by an appropriate court of any other jurisdiction in which the protected individual resides, or a person nominated by the incapacitated individual in a durable power of attorney;

(2) A person or corporation nominated by the protected individual;

(3) The spouse of the protected individual;

(4) An adult child of the protected individual;

(5) A parent of the protected individual;

(6) Any relative of the protected individual who has resided with the protected individual for more than 6 months before the filing of the petition; and

(7) Any other person.

(b) An individual listed in paragraph (1), (3), (4), (5), or (6) of subsection (a) of this section may designate in writing a substitute to serve instead and transfer the priority to the substitute. With respect to persons having equal priority, the court shall select the person it deems best qualified to serve. The court, acting in the best interest of the protected individual, may pass over a person having priority and appoint a person having a lower priority or no priority.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Mar. 24, 1998, D.C. Law 12-81, § 14(u), 45 DCR 745.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2057.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-309 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2058. Bond.

The court may require a conservator to furnish a bond conditioned upon faithful discharge of all duties of the trust according to law, with sureties as it shall specify. Unless otherwise directed, the bond must be in the amount of the aggregate capital value of the property of the estate in the conservator’s control, plus 1 year’s estimated income, and minus the value of securities deposited under arrangements requiring an order of the court for their removal and the value of any land that the fiduciary, by express limitation of power, lacks power to sell or convey without court authorization.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2058.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-310 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2059. Effect of acceptance of appointment.

By accepting appointment, a conservator submits personally to the jurisdiction of the court in any proceeding relating to the estate that may be instituted by any interested person. Notice of any proceeding shall be delivered to the conservator or mailed, by registered or certified mail, to the address as listed in the petition for appointment or as reported to the court and to the address as then known to the petitioner, except where the conservator resides in a foreign jurisdiction in which case notice shall be made to the court.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2059.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-312 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2060. Compensation and expenses.

(a) As approved by order of the court, any case reviewer, visitor, attorney, examiner, conservator, special conservator, guardian ad litem, or guardian is entitled to compensation for services rendered either in a guardianship proceeding, protective proceeding, or in connection with a guardianship or protective arrangement. Any guardian or conservator is entitled to reimbursement for room, board, and clothing personally provided to the ward from the estate of the ward, but only as approved by order of the court. Compensation shall be paid from the estate of the ward or person or, if the estate of the ward or person will be depleted by payouts made under this subsection, from a fund established by the District.

(a-1) The estate of a person or ward shall be presumed to be depleted for purposes of this chapter, and all compensation, expenses, and payouts made under this section shall be paid from a fund established by the District:

(1) If the person or ward qualifies for federal Supplemental Security Income under Title XVI of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. § 1381 et seq.];

(2) If the person or ward qualifies for Medicaid or Medicaid Expansion Programs as allowed by federal, state, or local requirements,

(3) If the person or ward qualifies for other means-tested public assistance programs as allowed by federal, state, or local requirements, including, Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Interim Disability Assistance, Food Stamps, and D.C. Healthcare Alliance;

(4) If the person or ward qualifies for federal disability benefits, including Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance Benefits under Title II of the Social Security Act [42 U.S.C. § 401 et seq.], Rehabilitation Services Administration Payments, Railroad Retirement Board, or Veterans benefits and such benefits constitute the person or ward’s sole source of income;

(5) If the person or ward has been found to be unable to pay for habilitation, care, or legal services by any branch of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia; or

(6) If the circumstances listed in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), and (5) of this subsection do not apply, the person or ward may establish, by affidavit or other proof satisfactory to the court, the inability to pay any costs without substantial financial hardship to himself or herself or his or her family.

(b) There is established within the General Fund of the District of Columbia a separate account to be known as the “Guardianship Fund” (“Fund”) and to be administered by the court. There is authorized to be appropriated funds necessary for the administration of this section.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; July 25, 1987, D.C. Law 7-17, § 2(a), 34 DCR 3802; Oct. 22, 2008, D.C. Law 17-249, § 2(j), 55 DCR 9206; Sept. 26, 2012, D.C. Law 19-171, § 76, 59 DCR 6190; Mar. 11, 2015, D.C. Law 20-230, § 2(h), 62 DCR 278.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2060.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2047.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-249 added subsec. (a-1).

The 2012 amendment by D.C. Law 19-171 added a comma following “requirements” in (a-1)(3).

The 2015 amendment by D.C. Law 20-230 substituted “As approved by order of the court, any case reviewer, visitor” for “As approved by order of the court, any visitor” at the beginning of (a).

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(j) of Health-Care Decisions for Persons with Developmental Disabilities Emergency Act of 2007 (D.C. Act 17-161, October 18, 2007, 54 DCR 10932).

For temporary (90 day) amendment of section, see § 2(j) of Health-Care Decisions for Persons with Developmental Disabilities Congressional Review Emergency Amendment Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-245, January 23, 2008, 55 DCR 1230).

For temporary (90 day) amendment, see § 2(j) of Health-Care Decisions for Persons with Developmental Disabilities Emergency Act of 2008 (D.C. Act 17-492, August 4, 2008, 55 DCR 9167).

Temporary Legislation

Section 2(j) of D.C. Law 17-100 added subsec. (a-1) to read as follows:

“(a-1) The estate of a person or ward shall be deemed depleted for purposes of this chapter, and all compensation, expenses, and payouts made under this section shall be paid from a fund established by the District:

“(1) If the person or ward qualifies for federal Supplemental Security Income under Title XVI of the Social Security Act;

“(2) If the person or ward qualifies for Medicaid or Medicaid Expansion Programs as allowed by federal, state, or local requirements;

“(3) If the person or ward qualifies for other means-tested public assistance programs as allowed by federal, state, or local requirements, including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Interim Disability Assistance, Food Stamps, or D.C. Healthcare Alliance;

“(4) If the person or ward qualifies for federal disability benefits, including Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance Benefits under Title II of the Social Security Act, Rehabilitation Services Administration Payments, Railroad Retirement Board, or Veterans benefits and such benefits constitute the person or ward’s sole source of income;

“(5) If the person or ward has been found to be unable to pay for habilitation, care, or legal services by any branch of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia; or

“(6) If the circumstances listed in paragraphs (1), (2), (3), (4), or (5) of this subsection do not apply, the person or ward establishes, by affidavit or other proof satisfactory to the court, the inability to pay any costs without substantial financial hardship to himself or herself or his or her family.”

Section 6(b) of D.C. Law 17-100 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

References in Text

Title XVI of the Social Security Act, referred to in subsection (a-1) of this section, is codified as 42 U.S.C. § 1381 et seq.

Title II of the Social Security Act, referred to in subdivision (a-1) of this section, is codified as 42 U.S.C. §§ 401 to 433.

Editor's Notes

Appropriations approved: Public Law 104-194, 110 Stat. 2358, the District of Columbia Appropriations Act, 1997, provided that funds appropriated for expenses under § 21-2060, for fiscal year ending September 30, 1997, shall be available for obligations incurred under that Act in each fiscal year since inception in fiscal year 1989.

Prompt Payment of Appointed Counsel. Section 129 of Pub. L. 107-96, Dec. 21, 2001, 115 Stat. 923, provided:

“(a) ASSESSMENT OF INTEREST FOR DELAYED PAYMENTS—If the Superior Court of the District of Columbia or the District of Columbia Court of Appeals does not make a payment described in subsection (b) prior to the expiration of the 45-day period which begins on the date the Court receives a completed voucher for a claim for the payment, interest shall be assessed against the amount of the payment which would otherwise be made to take into account the period which begins on the day after the expiration of such 45-day period and which ends on the day the Court makes the payment.

“(b) PAYMENTS DESCRIBED.—A payment described in this subsection is —

“(1) a payment authorized under section 11-2604 and section 11-2605, D.C. Code (relating to representation provided under the District of Columbia Criminal Justice Act);

“(2) a payment for counsel appointed in proceedings in the Family Division of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia under chapter 23 of title 16, D.C. Code; or

“(3) a payment for counsel authorized under section 21-2060, D.C. Code (relating to representation provided under the District of Columbia Guardianship, Protective Proceedings, and Durable Power of Attorney Act of 1986).

“(c) STANDARDS FOR SUBMISSION OF COMPLETED VOUCHERS.—The chief judges of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals shall establish standards and criteria for determining whether vouchers submitted for claims for payments described in subsection (b) are complete, and shall publish and make such standards and criteria available to attorneys who practice before such Courts.

“(d) RULE OF CONSTRUCTION.—Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the assessment of interest against any claim (or portion of any claim) which is denied by the Court involved.

“(e) Effective Date.—This section shall apply with respect to claims received by the Superior Court of the District of Columbia or the District of Columbia Court of Appeals during fiscal year 2002, and claims received previously that remain unpaid at the end of fiscal year 2001, and would have qualified for interest payment under this section.”

Prompt Payment of Appointed Counsel. Section 128 of Pub. L. 108-7, Feb. 20, 2003, 117 Stat. 127, provided:

“(a) If the Superior Court of the District of Columbia or the District of Columbia Court of Appeals does not make a payment described in subsection (b) prior to the expiration of the 45-day period which begins on the date the Court receives a completed voucher for a claim for the payment, interest shall be assessed against the amount of the payment which would otherwise be made to take into account the period which begins on the day after the expiration of such 45-day period and which ends on the day the Court makes the payment.

“(b) A payment described in this subsection is—

“(1) a payment authorized under section 11-2604 and section 11-2605, D.C. Official Code (relating to representation provided under the District of Columbia Criminal Justice Act);

“(2) a payment for counsel appointed in proceedings in the Family Court of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia under chapter 23 of title 16, D.C. Official Code; or

“(3) a payment for counsel authorized under section 21-2060, D.C. Official Code (relating to representation provided under the District of Columbia Guardianship, Protective Proceedings, and Durable Power of Attorney Act of 1986).

“(c) The chief judges of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia and the District of Columbia Court of Appeals shall establish standards and criteria for determining whether vouchers submitted for claims for payments described in subsection (b) are complete, and shall publish and make such standards and criteria available to attorneys who practice before such Courts.

“(d) Nothing in this section shall be construed to require the assessment of interest against any claim (or portion of any claim) which is denied by the Court involved.

“(e) This section shall apply with respect to claims received by the Superior Court of the District of Columbia or the District of Columbia Court of Appeals during fiscal year 2003 and any subsequent fiscal year.”

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-313 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2061. Death, resignation, or removal of conservator.

The court may remove a conservator for good cause, upon notice and hearing, or accept the resignation of a conservator. Upon the conservator’s death, resignation, or removal, the court may appoint another conservator. A conservator so appointed succeeds to the title and powers of the predecessor.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2061.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-314 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2062. Petitions for orders subsequent to appointment.

(a) Any person interested in the welfare of an individual for whom a conservator has been appointed may petition the court for an order:

(1) Requiring bond, additional bond, or reducing bond;

(2) Requiring a special accounting for the administration of the trust;

(3) Directing distribution;

(4) Removing the conservator and appointing a temporary or successor conservator; or

(5) Granting other appropriate relief.

(b) A conservator may petition the court for instructions concerning fiduciary responsibility.

(c) Upon notice and hearing, the court may give appropriate instructions or make any appropriate order.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2062.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-315 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2063. General duty of conservator.

A conservator, in relation to powers conferred by this subchapter, or implicit in the title acquired by virtue of the proceeding, shall act as a fiduciary and observe the standards of care applicable to trustees.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2063.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-316 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2064. Inventory and records.

Within 60 days after appointment, each conservator shall prepare and file with the court a complete inventory of the estate subject to the conservatorship together with an oath or affirmation that the inventory is believed to be complete and accurate as far as information permits. The conservator shall provide a copy to the protected individual unless disappeared, detained by a foreign power, or held hostage by someone other than a foreign power. A copy also shall be provided to any guardian.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2064.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-317 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2065. Accounts.

(a) Each conservator shall account to the court for administration of the trust upon resignation or removal, at least annually on the anniversary date of appointment, and at other times as the court may direct. On termination of the protected individual’s incapacity, a conservator shall account to the court, to the formerly protected individual, or the successors of that individual. Subject to appeal or vacation within the time permitted, an order after notice and hearing allowing an intermediate account of a conservator adjudicates liabilities concerning the matters considered in connection with the order, and an order, following notice and hearing, allowing a final account adjudicates all previously unsettled liabilities of the conservator to the protected individual or the protected individual’s successors relating to the conservatorship. In connection with any account, the court may require a conservator to submit to a physical check of the estate to be made in any manner the court specifies.

(b) Upon appointment, a conservator shall develop an individual conservatorship plan together with the guardian and to the maximum extent possible, the incapacitated individual. The plan shall specify:

(1) The services that are necessary to manage the financial resources designated by the order of the court;

(2) The means through which those services will be provided;

(3) The manner in which the incapacitated individual, guardian, conservator, or any other individual who has been appointed to serve in that capacity will exercise and share their decision-making authority;

(4) The policies and procedures governing the expenditure of funds; and

(5) Other items that will assist in the management of the designated financial resources and in fulfilling the needs of the incapacitated individual, the terms of the court’s order, and the duties of the conservator.

(c) The individual conservatorship plan shall be submitted to the court not more than 60 days after the conservator has been appointed, together with a complete inventory of the designated financial resources. The inventory shall include an oath or affirmation that, to the best of the conservator’s knowledge, it is complete and accurate.

(d) A conservator shall submit a report to the court:

(1) At least annually;

(2) When the court orders additional reports to be filed;

(3) When there is a significant change in the capacity of the incapacitated individual to manage his or her financial resources;

(4) When the conservator resigns or is removed; and

(5) When the conservatorship is terminated.

(e) The court shall require that a copy of the individual conservatorship plan and a copy of the inventory be sent to:

(1) The incapacitated individual;

(2) The attorney of record for each party;

(3) The individual most closely related to the subject of the intervention proceeding by blood, marriage, or domestic partnership unless that individual’s name or whereabouts is unknown and cannot be reasonably ascertained;

(4) The individual or facility, if any, having custody of the subject of the intervention proceeding;

(5) The individual, if any, proposed for appointment by a will as a guardian; and

(6) The individual, if any, appointed or proposed for appointment as guardian ad litem.

(f) The conservator shall be responsible for sending the required copies delineated in subsection (e) of this section and shall bear the cost of the mailings.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Apr. 4, 2006, D.C. Law 16-79, § 7(c), 53 DCR 1035.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2065.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-79, in subsec. (e)(3), substituted “blood, marriage, or domestic partnership” for “blood or marriage”.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-318 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2066. Conservators; title by appointment.

(a) The appointment of a conservator vests in the conservator title as trustee to all property of the protected individual presently held or after acquired, or to the part of the property specified in the order, including title to any property held for the protected individual by custodians or attorneys-in-fact. An order specifying that only a part of the property of the protected individual vests in the conservator creates a limited conservatorship.

(b) Except as otherwise provided in this chapter, the interest of the protected individual in property vested in a conservator by this section is not transferable or assignable by the protected individual. An attempted transfer or assignment by the protected individual, though ineffective to affect property rights, may generate a claim for restitution or damages.

(c) Neither property vested in a conservator by this section nor the interest of the protected person in that property is subject to levy, garnishment, or similar process, except as provided in an order issued in a protective proceeding.

(d) A claimant whose claim has not been paid may petition the court for a determination of the claim at any time before the claim is barred by the applicable statute of limitations and, upon due proof, may procure an order for the claim’s allowance, payment, or security from the estate. If a proceeding is pending against a protected person at the time of the appointment of a conservator or is initiated against the protected person after the appointment, the moving party shall give notice to the conservator whenever the proceeding may result in a claim against the estate.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2066.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2011 and § 21-2072.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-319 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2067. Recording of conservator’s letters.

(a) Letters of conservatorship are evidence of the transfer of all assets, or the part of assets specified in the letters, of a protected individual to the conservator. An order terminating a conservatorship is evidence of the transfer of all assets subjected to the conservatorship from the conservator to the protected individual or to the personal representative of the individual.

(b) Letters of conservatorship and orders terminating conservatorships shall be filed or recorded in the Office of the Recorder of Deeds to give record notice of title as between the conservator and the protected individual.

(c) Letters of conservatorship shall be filed or recorded by the conservator and the conservator shall bear the costs of the filings. If the estate would be depleted by the payment of filing fees, the Recorder of Deeds may waive the fees.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2067.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-320 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2068. Sale, encumbrance, or transaction involving conflict of interest; voidable; exceptions.

Any sale or encumbrance to a conservator, the spouse, domestic partner, agent, attorney of a conservator, or any corporation, trust, or other organization in which the conservator has a substantial beneficial interest, or any other transaction involving the estate being administered by the conservator that is affected by a substantial conflict between fiduciary and personal interests is voidable, unless the transaction is approved by the court after a hearing as directed. Notice of the hearing shall be in the form and manner as prescribed in sections 21-2042(c) and 21-2031(b) and shall be served on the following individuals:

(1) The incapacitated individual;

(2) The attorney of record for each party;

(3) The individual most closely related to the subject of the intervention proceeding by blood, marriage, or domestic partnership, unless that individual’s name or whereabouts is unknown and cannot be reasonably ascertained;

(4) The individual or facility, if any, having custody of the subject of the intervention proceeding;

(5) The individual, if any, proposed for appointment by will as a guardian; and

(6) The individual, if any, appointed or proposed for appointment as guardian ad litem.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Apr. 4, 2006, D.C. Law 16-79, § 7(d), 53 DCR 1035.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2068.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 16-79, in the lead-in language, substituted “the spouse, domestic partner,” for “the spouse,”; and in par. (3), substituted “blood, marriage, or domestic partnership” for “blood or marriage”.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-321 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2069. Persons dealing with conservators; protection.

(a) A person who in good faith either assists or deals with a conservator for value in any transaction other than those requiring a court order as provided in section 21-2055(c) is protected as if the conservator properly exercised the power. The fact that a person knowingly deals with a conservator does not alone require the person to inquire into the existence of power or the propriety of its exercise, but restrictions on powers of conservators that are endorsed on letters as provided in section 21-2072 are effective as to third persons. A person is not bound to see the proper application of estate assets paid or delivered to a conservator.

(b) The protection expressed in this section extends to any procedural irregularity or jurisdictional defect occurring in proceedings leading to the issuance of letters and is not a substitute for protection provided by comparable provisions of the law relating to commercial transactions or to simplifying transfers of securities by fiduciaries.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2069.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-322 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2070. Powers of conservator in administration.

(a) Subject to limitation provided in section 21-2072, a conservator has all of the powers conferred in this section and any additional powers conferred by the law of the District.

(b) Without court authorization or confirmation, a conservator may invest and reinvest funds of the estate as would a trustee.

(c) A conservator, acting reasonably in efforts to accomplish a purpose of the appointment, may act without court authorization or confirmation, to perform the following:

(1) Collect, hold, and retain assets of the estate including land in another jurisdiction, until judging that disposition of the assets should be made, and the assets may be retained even though they include an asset in which the conservator is personally interested;

(2) Receive additions to the estate;

(3) Continue or participate in the operation of any business or other enterprise;

(4) Acquire an undivided interest in an estate asset in which the conservator, in any fiduciary capacity, holds an undivided interest;

(5) Invest and reinvest estate assets in accordance with subsection (b) of this section;

(6) Deposit estate funds in a local or federally insured financial institution, including a financial institution operated by the conservator;

(7) Acquire or dispose of an estate asset, including land in another jurisdiction, for cash or on credit, at public or private sale, and manage, develop, improve, exchange, partition, change the character of, or abandon an estate asset;

(8) Make ordinary or extraordinary repairs or alterations in buildings or other structures, demolish any improvements, and raze existing or erect new party walls or buildings;

(9) Subdivide, develop, or dedicate land to public use, make or obtain the vacation of plats and adjust boundaries, adjust differences in valuation or exchange, partition by giving or receiving considerations, and dedicate easements to public use without consideration;

(10) Enter, for any purpose, into a lease as lessor or lessee, with or without option to purchase or renew, for a term within or extending beyond the term of the conservatorship;

(11) Enter into a lease or arrangement for exploration and removal of minerals or other natural resources or enter into a polling or agreement;

(12) Grant an option involving disposition of an estate asset and take an option for the acquisition of any asset;

(13) Vote a security, in person or by general or limited proxy;

(14) Pay calls, assessments, and any other sums chargeable or accruing against or on account of securities;

(15) Sell or exercise stock-subscription or conversion rights;

(16) Consent, directly or through a committee or other agent, to the reorganization, consolidation, merger, dissolution, or liquidation of a corporation or other business enterprise;

(17) Insure the assets of the estate against damage or loss and the conservator against liability with respect to third persons;

(18) Borrow money to be repaid from estate assets or otherwise, advance money for the protection of the estate or the protected individual and for all expenses, losses, and liabilities sustained in the administration of the estate or because of the holding or ownership of any estate assets, for which the conservator has a lien on the estate as against the protected individual for advances so made;

(19) Pay or contest any claim, settle a claim by or against the estate or the protected individual by compromise, arbitration, or otherwise, and release, in whole or part, any claim belonging to the estate to the extent the claim is uncollectible;

(20) Pay taxes, assessments, compensation of the conservator, and other expenses incurred in the collection, care, administration, and protection of the estate;

(21) Allocate items of income or expense to either estate income or principal, as provided by law, including creation of reserves out of income for depreciation, obsolescence, amortization, or for depletion in mineral or timber properties;

(22) Pay any sum distributable to a protected individual or dependent of the protected individual by paying the sum to the distributee or by paying the sum for the use of the distributee to the guardian of the distributee, or, if none, to a relative or other person having custody of the distributee;

(23) Employ persons, including attorneys, auditors, investment advisors, or agents to advise or assist in the performance of administrative duties, act upon their recommendation without independent investigation, and instead of acting personally, employ 1 or more agents to perform any act of administration, whether discretionary or not;

(24) Prosecute or defend actions, claims, or proceedings in any jurisdiction for the protection of estate assets and for the protection of the conservator in the performance of fiduciary duties; and

(25) Execute and deliver all instruments that will accomplish or facilitate the exercise of the powers vested in the conservator.

(d) A conservator or a guardian who exercises a settlor’s power to consent to the modification or termination of a noncharitable irrevocable trust under section 19-1304.11(a), or who exercises a settlor’s powers with respect to revocation, amendment, or distribution of trust property under section 19-1306.02(f), may do so only with the approval of the court supervising the conservatorship or guardianship upon a finding by the court that the action is not inconsistent with the trust purposes.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Mar. 24, 1998, D.C. Law 12-81, § 14(v), 45 DCR 745; Mar. 10, 2004, D.C. Law 15-104, § 3(b), 51 DCR 208.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2070.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2072.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 15-104 added subsec. (d).

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-323 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2071. Distributive duties and powers of conservator.

A conservator may expend or distribute income or principal of the estate without court authorization or confirmation for the support, education, care, or benefit of the protected individual and dependents in accordance with the following principles:

(1) The conservator shall consider recommendations relating to the appropriate standard of support, education, and benefit of the protected individual or dependent made by the protected individual and a parent or guardian, if any. The conservator may not be surcharged for sums paid to persons furnishing support, education, or care to the protected individual or a dependent pursuant to the recommendations of a guardian of the protected individual unless the conservator knows that the guardian derives personal financial benefit from the recommendation, including relief from any personal duty of support, or knows that the recommendations are clearly not in the best interest of the protected individual.

(2) The conservator shall expend or distribute sums reasonably necessary for the support, education, care, or benefit of the protected individual and dependents with due regard to:

(A) The size of the estate, the probable duration of the conservatorship, and the likelihood that the protected individual, at some future time, may be fully able to be wholly self-sufficient and able to manage business affairs and the estate;

(B) The accustomed standard of living of the protected individual and dependents; and

(C) Other funds or sources used for the support of the protected individual.

(3) The conservator may expend funds of the estate for the support of individuals legally dependent on the protected individual and others who are members of the protected individual’s household who are unable to support themselves and who are in need of support.

(4) Funds expended under this section may be paid by the conservator to any person, including the protected individual, to reimburse for expenditures that the conservator might have made, or in advance for services to be rendered to the protected individual if it is reasonable to expect that the services will be performed and advance payments are customary or reasonably necessary under the circumstances.

(5) A conservator, in discharging the responsibilities conferred by court order and this section, shall implement the principles described in section 21-2055(a).


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Mar. 24, 1998, D.C. Law 12-81, § 14(w), 45 DCR 745.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2071.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2072 and § 21-2073.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-324 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2072. Enlargement or limitation of powers of conservator.

Subject to the restrictions in section 21-2055(c) , the court may confer on a conservator, at the time of appointment or later, in addition to the powers conferred by sections 21-2070 and 21-2071 , any power that the court itself could exercise under section 21-2055(b)(2) . The court, at the time of appointment or later, may limit the powers of a conservator otherwise conferred by sections 21-2070 and 21-2071 or previously conferred by the court and may at any time remove or modify any limitations. If the court limits any power conferred on the conservator by section 21-2070 or section 21-2071 , or specifies, as provided in section 21-2066(a) , that title to some but not all assets of the protected individual vest in the conservator, the limitation or specification of assets subject to the conservatorship shall be endorsed upon the letters of appointment.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2072.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 21-2069 and § 21-2070.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-325 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2073. Preservation of estate plan; right to examine.

In investing the estate, selecting assets of the estate for distribution under section 21-2071 , and utilizing powers of revocation or withdrawal available for the support of the protected individual and exercisable by the conservator or the court, the conservator and the court shall take into account any estate plan of the protected individual known to them, including a will, any revocable trust of which the individual is settlor, and any contract, transfer, or joint ownership arrangement originated by the protected individual with provisions for payment or transfer of benefits or interests at the individual’s death to another. The conservator may examine the will of the protected individual.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2073.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-326 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2074. Personal liability of conservator.

(a) Even if otherwise provided for in the contract, a conservator is not personally liable on a contract properly entered into in a fiduciary capacity in the course of administration or distribution of the estate unless the conservator fails to reveal the representative capacity and identify the estate in the contract.

(b) The conservator is personally liable for obligations arising from ownership or control of property of the estate or for torts committed in the course of administration of the estate only if personally at fault.

(c) Claims based on (1) contracts entered into by a conservator in a fiduciary capacity, (2) obligations arising from ownership or control of the estate, or (3) torts committed in the course of administration of the estate, may be asserted against the estate by proceeding against the conservator in a fiduciary capacity, whether or not the conservator is personally liable for the claim.

(d) Any question of liability between the estate and the conservator personally may be determined in a proceeding for accounting, surcharge, or indemnification, or other appropriate proceeding or action.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2074.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-328 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2075. Termination of proceedings.

The protected individual, conservator, or any other interested person may petition the court to terminate the conservatorship. A protected individual seeking termination is entitled to the same rights and procedures as in an original proceeding for a protective order. The court, upon determining after notice and hearing that the incapacity of the protected individual or the need for the protective arrangement has ceased, shall terminate the conservatorship. Upon termination, title to assets of the estate passes to the formerly protected individual or to successors. The order of termination shall provide for expenses of administration and direct the conservator to execute appropriate instruments to evidence the transfer.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2075.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-329 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2076. Payment of debt and delivery of property to foreign conservator without local proceedings.

(a) Any person indebted to a protected individual or having possession of property or of an instrument evidencing a debt, stock, or chose in action belonging to a protected individual may pay or deliver it to a conservator, guardian of the estate, or other fiduciary appointed by a court of the state of residence of the protected individual upon being presented with proof of appointment and an affidavit made by or on behalf of the fiduciary stating:

(1) That no protective proceeding relating to the protected individual is pending in the District; and

(2) That the foreign fiduciary is entitled to payment or to receive delivery.

(b) If the person to whom the affidavit is presented is not aware of any protective proceeding pending in the District, payment or delivery in response to the demand and affidavit discharges the debtor or possessor.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632; Mar. 24, 1998, D.C. Law 12-81, § 14(x), 45 DCR 745.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2076.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-330 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).


§ 21–2077. Foreign conservator; proof of authority; bond; powers.

If a conservator has not been appointed in the District and no petition in a protective proceeding is pending in the District, a conservator appointed in the state in which the protected individual resides may file with the court authenticated copies of letters of appointment and copies of any bond. The domiciliary foreign conservator may then exercise, as to assets in the District, all powers of a conservator appointed in the District and may maintain actions and proceedings in the District subject to any conditions imposed upon nonresident parties generally.


(Feb. 28, 1987, D.C. Law 6-204, § 2(a), 34 DCR 632.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 21-2077.

Editor's Notes

Uniform Law: This section is based upon § 2-331 of the Uniform Guardianship and Protective Proceedings Act (1982 Act).