New Mexico requires orientation as part of guardian reforms
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico will now require that proposed guardians and conservators participate in an orientation program before being appointed by a judge to make decisions for people who are incapacitated.
The New Mexico Supreme Court issued an order Thursday approving the new rule. It will apply to cases filed on or after Feb. 1.
A steering committee involved with reforming the state’s adult guardianship system developed a series of 10 videos covering topics that range from filing grievances to identifying and reporting abuse. Officials said the program builds on reforms enacted by state lawmakers in recent years.
Justice Shannon Bacon said the videos will ensure that people serving in theses roles understand their duties and responsibilities under the law.
Court-appointed guardians make personal and health care decisions for individuals who are incapacitated. Conservators are appointed by a district court to manage the finances and possibly the property of an incapacitated person, including those who may have dementia, traumatic brain injuries or mental illness.