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Protecting America's Heroes
 
Protecting America's Veterans
Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs (ODVA) Conservatorship Program serves veterans, their surviving spouses, minor children or helpless adult children of veterans, and dependent parents. 
 
Our professional Trust Officers are dedicated to assisting Oregon veterans manage their financial affairs and property while helping ease the burdens often associated with paying bills, collecting funds on debts owed by the veteran, corresponding with creditors, buying or selling real-estate, or other investments
 
ODVA’s Trust Officers are experts in Oregon Laws and Administrative Rules and USDVA law and regulation.  Whenever possible they work closely with interested family members in planning for the welfare and best interest of the veteran, their spouse or dependent.
 
When is a Conservator Needed?
When an individual has a substantial amount of income, assets or property and is unable to manage his or her finances well enough to provide adequate care themselves, a conservator may be needed.  Causes for this inability may include mental illness or deficiency, physical illness or disability, chronic use of drugs or controlled substances, disappearance or confinement, chronic intoxication, and helpless or minor children. 
 
Other reasons a conservator may be needed is if an individual is using income and assets to his or her own detriment or if they are being taken advantage of financially by another person.
 
What does a Conservator do?
A conservator administers the financial estate of a protected person according to provisions of Oregon Revised Statutes, Title 13, Chapter 125.  A conservator gains possession of all income and assets and establishes a personal budget and pays for care, personal needs, dependent support, property maintenance, etc., according to that budget.  A conservator applies for all benefits for which the protected person may be eligible and invests or otherwise conserves unused funds. 
 
An accounting of financial activities is submitted to the court, USDVA, protected persons and others as required by law.
 
How much control does the Conservator have over the protected persons life?
A conservator assumes all responsibility for the financial affairs of the protected person's estate.  They are not directly responsible for the personal affairs of the person, although the income and assets available may limit the individual’s lifestyle.
 
Why use ODVA's Program?
ODVA’s Trust Officers have an extensive knowledge of USDVA laws and regulations.  They have a network of contacts with information about Social Security, Medicare, public assistance, special senior citizen, disabled and low income programs.  They investigate income sources the protected person may be eligible for and work closely with family and interested persons when planning for the welfare of the protected person. 
 
Oregon law (ORS 406.050) gives the Director of the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs the authority to act, without bond, as conservator of the estate of a person who qualifies for benefits from the USDVA.
 
Starting a Conservatorship
A petition asking for the appointment of a conservator may be submitted to a court by anyone interested in the estate, affairs or welfare of the person.  This includes parents, guardian, custodians or any person who would be adversely affected by lack of effective management of the property or affairs.  The court appoints a conservator and the order remains in effect until the person’s condition improves, majority is reached or until death.
 
What fees are charged?
A seven percent fee on all income under management may be charged for ordinary conservatorship services.  Additional fees may be charged for unusual services provided.  ODVA’s rate is significantly less than that of private conservatorship services.  Fees may also be waived in individual cases if circumstances warrant such action.
 
Information
Questions regarding persons presently under conservatorship, pending cases, or inquiry about concerns you may have about a USDVA beneficiary who is unable to properly manage his or her own financial affairs, should be addressed to:
 
Conservatorship Manager
Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs
700 Summer St NE
Salem, OR 97301-1285
 
800-692-9666
503-373-2085
TDD 503-373-2217

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