Legal Question in Elder Law in Kentucky

Next Step for Judging Incompetence

My Mother in Law has some serious mental issues, including not knowing what day it is, getting lost somewhere she's all her life, and not taking care of herself. Unfortunately, her Psychiatrist has not diagnosed her with anything other than being BiPolar. She is married, however, her husband is a diagnosed manic depressive. The family believes that she cannot take care of herself and he is not able to take care of her either. She still has her credit cards and has run those bills way up with magazine subscriptions that she has no interest in (such as Gymnastics Today!) What steps should my husband start taking to declare her incompetent? We would very much like to get her better mental health treatment and get her away from her husband so one of us can take care of her.

Asked on 3/15/04, 8:26 pm

2 Answers from Attorneys

Martin Kasdan, Jr. Martin Z. Kasdan, Jr., Attorney at Law

Re: Next Step for Judging Incompetence

In KY, the term "incompetent" has been replaced by "disabled" (in the context of being unable to make decisions for one's personal and/or financial affairs). A petition is filed in the county of residence, the county attorney is obligated to assist in this process. There will be a 3-person clinical team appointed to evaluate the "respondent" (not "defendant"), and an attorney is also apointed by the court. A jury trial must be held within 60 days. I hope this information is helpful. Please feel free to follow up with me if necessary.

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Answered on 3/15/04, 9:21 pm

G. Joseph Holthaus III Law Offices of G. Joseph Holthaus

Re: Next Step for Judging Incompetence

In Maryland it takes two physician's notices to pursue an incompetency hearing. A guardianship process may be another option. Speak to an attorney. (410) 799-9002

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Answered on 3/15/04, 11:13 pm

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