CONSERVATORSHIP OF the Person of K.W.
13 Cal.App.5th 1274
Court of Appeal, First District, Division 5, California.
Christine Koper, as Public Conservator, etc., Petitioner and Respondent,
K.W., Objector and Appellant.
Background: Public conservator petitioned under Lanterman-Petris-Short Act (LPS Act) for reappointment as conservator for conservatee, alleging that conservatee remained gravely disabled and unable to care for his own needs. Following jury trial, the Superior Court, Sonoma County, No. SPR-87836, René Auguste Chouteau, J., found conservatee gravely disabled due to mental disorder and reappointed conservator for additional one-year term. Conservatee appealed.
Holdings: The Court of Appeal, Bruiniers, J., held that:
1 as a matter of apparent first impression, appellate court would assume that rule prohibiting expert from testifying about case-specific hearsay applied retroactively to LPS Act jury trials pending on appeal;
2 portions of expert's testimony concerning case-specific hearsay were inadmissible absent independent proof or establishment of hearsay exception; but
3 expert was permitted to testify that he received information from others about conservatee in formulating his opinion; and
4 error in admitting portions of expert's testimony concerning case-specific hearsay was harmless.