Guardianships and Conservatorships
A guardianship is a legal action in which the court appoints a guardian who has the legal authority and duty to care for a protected person - a minor or adult who is unable to care for themselves because of the person’s cognitive or physical limitations.
A conservatorship is a legal action in which the court appoints a conservator to manage the financial affairs of a protected person - a minor or adult who is incapable of managing their own financial affairs because of the person’s cognitive or physical limitations.
Iowa law regarding guardianships and conservatorships can be found in Iowa Code Chapter 633; specifically, in, but not limited to, Iowa Code Sections 633.551 through 633.722.
The County Attorney-Civil Bureau does not and cannot provide legal representation or provide legal advice to private citizens.
The Polk County Attorney’s Office Civil Bureau provides legal services for the State of Iowa, Department of Health and Human Services (IHHS) in establishing adult guardianships and conservatorships.
Because the Civil Bureau’s role is limited to representing IHHS in these matters, the information and referral links on this site are made available as a courtesy to the public and to assist guardians and conservators during the course of their appointment.
Iowa Department of Health and Human Services (To report abuse and fraud)
- Adult Abuse Hotline: 1-800-362-2178 or 515-725-2727
Drake Legal Clinic – Civil Practice Clinic (Possible legal advice and representation)
Iowa Legal Aid - (Possible legal advice and representation)
- Apply for Help from Legal Aid - 1-800-532-1275
- Legal Hotline for Older Iowans - 1-800-992-8161
Iowa State Bar Association – (Find a Lawyer, Legal Resources)
Polk County Bar Association – (Find a Polk County Lawyer, Apply for Free Legal Assistance)