Kennebrew decision: updates
This has apparently presented as a problem for the PC as they are planning on discussing Karriker and Kennebrew. These two cases bring up the question of the limits of LPS conservatorship and whether the court can order the public conservator to initiate an LPS conservatorship. The first Kennebrew is a discussion of whether the PC abused its power to initiate an LPS conservatorship. In Karriker the PC denies LPS over the matter of the fact that the conservatee suffered from dementia a medical condition not covered by the LPS conservatorship act. Grave disability in Welfare and Institutions stipulates mental disorders like bipolar, schizophrenia, and schizoaffective disorder. Dementia is covered under the Probate code. A Probate “conservatorship, not an LPS conservatorship ․, addresses the special needs of a person with dementia.” (2 Cal. Conservatorships & Guardianships, supra, § 15.6, p. 897; see Prob.Code, § 2356.5.). Thus the public conservator argued that they are not mandated to initiate an LPS since dementia does not qualify as GD. When the court once more ordered that the public conservator order an LPS conservatorship be established, the public conservator argued that grave disability and conservatorship need to be for psychiatric illnesses not those of age. At the time Kennebrew was pending trial for a murder. He was first deemed incompetent to stand trial which lead to the conservatorship investigation. They asked the court for a Murphy conservatorship which is at its most basic; an LPS conservatorship for incarcerated patients. However, this case focuses on the different aspects of a Murphy conservatorship.
The public conservator erred in stating that an Murphy conservatorship held the same standards as LPS. The difference in mental disorder in LPS and Murphy is that an LPS mental illness must be of psychiatric nature whereas a Murphy has greater breadth of illnesses that are allowable. The court argued that in the special case of a Murphy conservatorship, dementia qualifies as a mental disorder.. Further more the court discusses how a Murphy conservatorship concern is the public rather than the conservatee as seen in LPS. As the public guardian put it, “[i]n an LPS conservatorship the primary focus is least restrictive placement and in a Murphy conservatorship it is the protection of the public.”. The main issue that policy makers have with this case is that the court wants to avoid unnecessary conservatorships as they are a large imposition on legal rights of the conservatee.
This is a very complicated case so there will be updates on what this case means for those patients who are incarcerated and their fate.
Juvenile Dependency and