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An advocate for you.

Being a guardian, conservator, POA or any kind of advocate — court-appointed or otherwise — is incredibly hard work. We’re here to help make it more manageable.

What is an advocate?

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The Advocord platform is designed to help anyone who is legally responsible for the finances and medical care of an incapacitated adult. Court-appointed guardians, conservators, agents acting under a power of attorney and representative payees are all examples of advocates (although not an exhaustive list). We use the blanket term “advocate” to refer to anyone who has taken on a position of responsibility for an incapacitated adult, or “dependent.”

Does Advocord provide legal advice?

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No we do not. No content on this site or in the app is intended as legal advice. You should consult with an attorney for any questions you may have. Advocord does not provide legal representation and no attorney-client relationship exists between Advocord and its subscribers.

What do the terms “court-appointed guardian”, “conservator”, “acting power of attorney” and “representative payee” mean?

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All of these terms refer to a person who is acting for an adult dependent, usually managing healthcare, financial or legal obligations.

A court-appointed guardian is a person who has been appointed by a court to fulfill medical, financial or other obligations for a person whom the court has determined cannot fulfill these obligations on their own. In some cases, a guardian fulfills only non-monetary obligations and a conservator fulfills any financial obligations.

An agent acting under power of attorney (also referred to as a POA) is a person who has legal authorization to act on behalf of another person. The scope of the POA’s authority varies on a case-by-case basis, but in general they are authorized to make decisions regarding finances, investments, property or healthcare.

A representative payee is a person who receives the Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments for a person who is incapable of managing these payments on their own.

Why do I need to track every single detail of what I do for my dependent?

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In many states, an advocate only has a few months before having to file their first care plan, report, inventory and/or budget. Plus, a majority of states require at least annual reporting of the advocate’s actions, both for the medical care of the dependent and financial management for the preceding year. Some require a minimum number of in-person visits.

Many times, POAs have to promptly respond to requests for detailed information from family, financial institutions or nursing facilities. A daily log is the efficient and transparent way to make your life a lot easier.

Can you remember every doctor or dentist visit you made for your dependent over the last year? How about all the time you spent on the phone with an insurance company? What about ATM withdrawals? It will be nearly impossible to make an accurate report a year after you have been appointed as an advocate if you haven’t kept a daily log. Remember, if you are court-appointed, you have an obligation to file complete, accurate and timely reports.

Why do I need to tell anybody what I am doing if I am not doing anything wrong?

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You have taken on a big responsibility by accepting your role as an advocate. How can you minimize disputes with family members, creditors and social service agencies like the Area Agency on Aging or Department of Health & Human Services? The answer: Transparency.

Many judges will tell you that an advocate brought into court for a hearing on allegations of financial harm or neglect/abuse is often there because of a lack of transparency. If you are able to share information about your actions as an advocate in a timely manner with interested family members, social service agencies and the court, you reduce the suspicions of others and your anxiety level. Failure to respond or to provide accurate and timely information often leads to further investigations or hearings. By providing reports or allowing appropriate parties to view your Advocord log, you can foster transparency and trust, and focus on what’s important—caring for your dependent.

Can I sell my dependent’s assets?

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Making material changes to your dependent’s assets is a significant step that should only be done after consulting with your attorney. Rules governing financial decisions made by an advocate are complex and very easy to unwittingly violate. A prudent advocate will always err on the side of caution and obtain prior court approval for every financial decision made on the dependent’s behalf. Proceeding without prior court approval can result in personal financial liability for the advocate.

Can I be paid for my work on my dependent’s behalf?

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Rules and limitations vary state to state, but generally, with prior court approval, an advocate can be paid for time spent on his or her dependent’s behalf. You should consult with your attorney to determine how to go about obtaining court approval for compensation. Once you have been approved, it is extremely important to use Advocord to keep detailed and accurate records of your time.

Can my Advocord subscription be paid for by my dependent?

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Advocord is a tool to help you be the best advocate for your dependent. Therefore, you may ask the court to approve reimbursement for your Advocord subscription from your dependent’s assets. We recommend consulting with your attorney to find out how to make that request of the court.

Why is an inventory important?

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An inventory is the starting point for every report that you will have to prepare. An advocate must have a complete picture of all assets and debts belonging to the dependent. An incomplete inventory will result in inaccurate reports and will greatly affect your ability to make sound financial decisions on your dependent’s behalf. Every item that the dependent owns needs to be reflected in the inventory in order to justify expenditures. For example, if you don’t list the dependent’s dog on the inventory, but show a recurring expense for dog food and veterinarian bills, questions will be asked about why those expenditures were made. Therefore, a current inventory should always be maintained.

Should I have insurance for my role as an advocate?

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In certain circumstances, an advocate may face personal liability for the actions of their dependent if the advocate fails to exercise reasonable control over the dependent. For example, failing to prevent the dependent from driving if he or she no longer has a valid license could possibly result in liability if the dependent drives and injures someone. If you are negligent with your dependent’s funds, and there is a loss, you may be held responsible. There are many other scenarios in which an advocate could face personal liability. Therefore, it is prudent to speak with an attorney to fully understand your duties and obligations, and to speak with an insurance agent about options for obtaining liability insurance coverage.

What does Advocord cost, and how is it billed?

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A one-time payment of $480.00 per dependent managed, plus any applicable sales tax, is payable when you register for the platform. This will automatically be renewed and billed on the one-year anniversary of your original subscription, and will continue thereafter unless and until you cancel your subscription.

Because we believe in the time-, energy- and money-saving power of Advocord, we are proud to offer subscribers 30 days risk-free. If you aren’t completely satisfied with our solution, you can receive a full refund within 30 days from the date of purchase. After that, we offer a prorated refund — for example, if you cancel in month 9, we will refund you for 3 months.

What happens to my account and reports if I stop service?

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If you cancel your subscription, it will not automatically renew, and you will no longer have access to your saved information after the previously scheduled automatic renewal date of your subscription.

Is the information secure?

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At Advocord, security and privacy are our top priorities and the guiding principles for all of our engineering efforts. We design and build all of our solutions on the principle of least privilege and that practice is carried through to deployment and systems operations. Our goal is to provide a best-in-class service that gives you total confidence in the storage and control of your information.
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