Most conservators in Minnesota will inevitably have to prepare for their first conservator audit. The Conservator Account Auditing Program (CAAP) occasionally does these audits to ensure that conservators are properly using the funds that are given to them, and to see that no abuse or fraud is being committed. CAAP requires a lot of documentation, but if your accounts and finances are well organized, the process won’t be too much trouble.
If you have just become a conservator, or are in the process of preparing for your first audit, follows these suggestions to make the process as easy as possible for you.
General Advice for Minnesota Conservators
There are certain things that you can do to make sure you complying will all the rules that come along with Minnesota conservatorship:
- Save all your receipts. If your purchase anything with the funds (whether it is bills or general items), make sure that the transaction is well documented. Keeping an organized financial record is the most important thing you can do.
- Keep copies of statements each month you receive them. When it comes time for your accounting or audit you won’t have to go back to the bank or financial institution for copies and possibly pay for them.
- If you need to, it’s usually a good idea to use some type of personal finance planning software (Quicken, QuickBooks, Excel, work well with MyMNConservator).
- Keep a copy of your conservatorship Letters and Order on hand so that you can refer to it if you need to.
- Familiarize yourself with MYMNConservator. This is a free online conservator account reporting application that is provided by the state of Minnesota. It allows you to file annual conservator reports electronically to the state.
Preparing for the Audit
If you follow the advice above, you should be well positioned to file your conservator account audit. Staying organized will allow you to compile all the necessary information quickly and without any trouble.
The Minnesota courts have released a complete conservator audit checklist that contains everything that you will need to provide for them. These things include:
- Official bank statements
- All applicable investments (CD’s, life insurance, IRA’s, etc.)
- Cancelled and cleared checks
- Receipts and invoices for expenses paid
- Documentation for all Guardian and Conservator fees paid
- Monthly credit card statements (if credit cards are used to pay for services)
One of the common amendments that the CAAP will make deals with categorization. Sometimes the audits will change how they categorize certain expenses, finances, etc., so be prepared to respond to these directions if they are made.
Consult Your Attorney if Problems Arise
If something goes wrong with your audit, it’s usually best to avoid confronting it on your own. Your attorney will be able to help you through the process.
If you are in the process of becoming a conservator in Minnesota, don’t forget that you will need to secure a conservatorship bond. To see how easy it is to secure a bond, contact one of our agents today.
Disclaimer: this is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice. If you need legal counsel, please contact an attorney directly.