Our Legislative Platform


California counties are operating PA/PG/PC programs within an environment of increasingly scarce resources. Local programs do not receive targeted state funding to support their operations, and this significantly hinders the ability of these programs to provide adequate staffing levels. Similarly, available local funding to pay for placements in psychiatric or residential care facilities is highly limited and prevents individuals with serious mental illness from accessing needed care. Across the state there is a dire paucity of affordable placement options for vulnerable individuals with complex behavioral health needs.

Furthermore, county Public Guardian and Conservator programs can only operate within a larger continuum of care. Successful continuums of care must:

  1. Provide multiple levels of care and services that ensure impaired elders and disabled adults receive adequate protection, support, and dignity as well
  2. Focus on the promotion of prevention and early intervention activities while also addressing the negative impact of stigma on individuals with serious mental illnesses

To provide conservatorship and guardianship services effectively, the continuum must be sufficiently resourced to provide health, wellness, recovery services, and public protection. More importantly, this continuum needs to operate from an equity lens that addresses the barriers to service access that are the result of structural racism, and discriminatory policies and practices. Specifically, the continuum of care must provide targeted support to assist communities of color, individuals with disabilities, older adults, those with serious mental illnesses, and LGBTQ populations.

Additionally, we recognize Public Administrator’s play a critical role serving decedent estates in the communities we serve. We are committed to enhancing PA resources and funding so that they can adequately provide for the protection of vulnerable estates throughout California.


The below provides key areas of legislative focus for the Association in both legislative actions we support as well as those that we oppose.

CA PA|PG|PC Supports the Following

  • Providing dedicated state funding to supplement existing county level funding for Public Administrator /Public Guardian/Public Conservator programs to ensure adequate staffing and manageable caseloads. Implementing data collection practices that promote equity, transparency, and accountability
  • Supporting increased funding for County programs designated to provide substance use treatment and programming, providing specialized resources for individuals with Traumatic Brain Injuries, individuals with Major Neurocognitive Disorders, Severe Mental Illness, and substance use disorders
  • Increasing the Probate Code 7666 (b) minimum compensation for Public Administrators
  • Expanding the availability of senior and disabled adult placements across California, including secured perimeter skilled nursing, sub-acute skilled nursing, and enhanced residential care facilities for the elderly. Expanding the availability of psychiatric placements, including state hospitals, locked, and unlocked sub-acute psychiatric facilities, as well as Institutes for the Mentally Diseased (IMD)
  • Increasing resources to treat and house violent offenders with serious mental illness
  • Supporting the role and responsibility of Regional Centers in providing services, including Probate Conservatorships, for individuals with developmental disabilities
  • Identifying alternative agencies such as a public safety department, to handle Murphy conservatorships, based on dangerousness and purpose of conservatorship. Providing specialized funding and resources including current staffing, locked treatment facilities, and restoration of competency service to meet the dramatic rise in Murphy Conservatorships (W&I Code Section 5008(h)(1)(B) cases
  • Expanding the availability of services and specialized placements for minors who are conserved under the provisions of LPS
  • Strengthening local continuums of care with a focus on expanding prevention and early intervention services. Promoting initiatives and funding of voluntary behavioral health services with the goal of reducing the need for involuntary services such as conservatorship
  • Promoting efforts to improve the quality of medical care provided to persons with serious mental illness
  • Increasing the availability of intensive case management services targeted specifically for individuals with serious mental illness
  • Expanding the implementation and authorities of Assisted Outpatient Treatment programs across the state as a less restrictive alternative to conservatorship
  • Developing initiatives that divert individuals with serious mental illness from arrest and incarceration, and that promote a collaborative response between law enforcement and behavioral services
  • Expanding mental health parity to ensure that managed health care plans provide appropriate and comprehensive services for adults who are under LPS conservatorship. Expanding medical necessity reimbursements for conservatees in need of acute placement to prevent further decompensation of mental illness
  • Utilizing Mental Health Services Act (MHSA) funds to serve and support the recovery of LPS conservatees
  • Expanding education about the LPS Act to medical and psychiatric professionals, with the goal of promoting consistent application of the law across the state
  • Providing targeted funding to support the development of specialized County Counsel services to provide full-service representation for Public Administrator/Public Guardian/Public Conservator programs. Allocate specific funding for court investigators so that mandated functions required by Probate Code 1826 and 1850 are completed and not shifted to court appointed counsel or the public guardian
  • Increasing funding to the courts to augment staffing and courtroom availability to promote expanded operations and timely hearings for guardian and conservatorship petitions. Creating policies that will allow for the use of virtual conservatorship and administration hearings and evaluations
  • Implementing a financial penalty for all financial institutions that violate the Public Administrator’s authority to proceed under Probate Code Section 7600 et seq. Supporting efforts to legally compel Credit Reporting Bureaus to expunge/delete immediately the credit history directly related to fraud, abuse, or neglect of a senior, or cognitively disabled adults, to facilitate the senior/disabled adult’s ability to secure affordable housing
  • Expanding the court’s ability to obtain Capacity Declarations or testimony by appointing a licensed Physician, Psychologist, or any other expert the court may deem appropriate to examine the proposed conservatee for the purpose of completing and/or testifying regarding the capacity of the proposed probate conservatee
  • Expanding low cost or free self-help clinics to allow families to petition for a probate conservatorship. Supporting efforts to improve and simplify the Capacity Declaration forms required for the establishment of conservatorship. Promoting the appointment of reliable family/loved ones to act as conservators in lieu of local government and providing culturally competent education and advocacy to support private conservators to appropriately serve in this capacity, including legal representation
  • Seeking new law to provide that Probate Conservators, Temporary Probate Conservators, and the Public Guardian/Conservator shall not be held civilly or criminally liable for any action by a Probate Conservatee (similar to W&I Code Section 5358.1). Providing license plate privacy/confidentiality with the DMV for all Public Administrator, Public Guardian, and Public Conservator fiduciary staff members
  • Supporting legislative efforts to prevent individuals diagnosed with dementia from possessing a firearm
  • Implementing WIC 5270, allowing acute care facilities to initiate 30-day involuntary holds for grave disability due to serious mental illness. Implementing an involuntary hold process including reimbursement for necessary protective care for cognitively impaired individuals who are a danger to themselves or someone else to be initiated by law enforcement, Adult Protective Services, Mental Health professionals or Emergency Room physicians. Implementing legislation that would allow an acute care hospital to transfer a patient to a skilled nursing facility or a board and care while an investigation by the Public Guardian is be conducted
  • Supporting increased and dedicated funding for older adults and cognitively disabled adults that support maintaining individuals’ independence in the community to prevent homelessness and substance abuse disorders who don’t meet conservatorship criteria
  • Supporting efforts to legally compel Corporations who offer senior or affordable housing units to allow a senior to employ their legal guardian/conservator as a guarantor for their housing application without penalty. Supporting efforts to eliminate all income to rent ratio requirements for affordable senior housing

CA PA|PG|PC Opposes the Following 

  • Imposing any unfunded mandated services for Public Administrators/Public Guardians/Public Conservators. Expanding the scope of the LPS Act through changes to the definition of grave disability, unless statutory amendments are accompanied by adequate and dedicated state funding to support county operated Public Guardian/Public Conservator programs, as well as psychiatric and residential placements of LPS conservatees
  • Amending the LPS Act in any manner that would limit the discretionary decision-making ability of Public Guardian/Public Conservator programs or restrict due process protections of individuals with serious mental illness
  • Developing new Administration, Mental Health or Probate conservatorship laws without input, consultation and support of the California State Association of Public Administrators, Public Guardians and Public Conservators
  • Imposing limitations on the requirement that PAs dispose of estate assets such as firearms or other similar type assets