2020 New Mexico Statutes
Chapter 45 - Uniform Probate Code
Article 5 - Protection of Persons Under Disability and Their Property
Part 1 - GENERAL PROVISIONS
Section 45-5-101 - Definitions and use of terms.
Unless otherwise apparent from the context or unless otherwise specifically defined in other sections that are applicable to specific articles, parts or sections of the Uniform Probate Code, as used in Chapter 45, Article 5 NMSA 1978:
A. "conservator" means a person who is appointed by a court to manage the property or financial affairs or both of a protected person;
B. "court" means the district court or the children's or family division of the district court where such jurisdiction is conferred by the Children's Code [Chapter 32A NMSA 1978];
C. "functional impairment" means an impairment that is measured by a person's inability to manage the person's personal care or the person's inability to manage the person's estate or financial affairs or both;
D. "guardian" has the same meaning as set forth in Section 45-1-201 NMSA 1978;
E. "guardian ad litem" has the same meaning as set forth in Section 45-1-201 NMSA 1978;
F. "incapacitated person" means any person who demonstrates over time either partial or complete functional impairment by reason of mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness or disability, chronic use of drugs, chronic intoxication or other cause, except minority, to the extent that the person is unable to manage the person's personal affairs or the person is unable to manage the person's estate or financial affairs or both;
G. "inability to manage the person's personal care" means the inability, as evidenced by recent behavior, to meet one's needs for medical care, nutrition, clothing, shelter, hygiene or safety so that physical injury, illness or disease has occurred or is likely to occur in the near future;
H. "inability to manage the person's estate or financial affairs or both" means gross mismanagement, as evidenced by recent behavior, of one's income and resources or medical inability to manage one's income and resources that has led or is likely in the near future to lead to financial vulnerability;
I. "interested person" means any person who has an interest in the welfare of the person to be protected pursuant to Chapter 45, Article 5 NMSA 1978;
J. "least restrictive form of intervention" means that the guardianship or conservatorship imposed on the incapacitated person or minor protected person represents only those limitations necessary to provide the needed care and rehabilitative services and that the incapacitated person or minor protected person shall enjoy the greatest amount of personal freedom and civil liberties;
K. "letters" has the same meaning as set forth in Section 45-1-201 NMSA 1978;
L. "limited conservator" means any person who is qualified to manage the estate and financial affairs of an incapacitated person pursuant to a court appointment in a limited conservatorship;
M. "limited conservatorship" means that an incapacitated person is subject to a conservator's exercise of some but not all of the powers enumerated in Sections 45-5-424 and 45-5-425 NMSA 1978;
N. "limited guardian" means any person who is qualified to manage the care, custody and control of an incapacitated person pursuant to a court appointment of a limited guardianship;
O. "limited guardianship" means that an incapacitated person is subject to a guardian's exercise of some but not all of the powers enumerated in Section 45-5-312 NMSA 1978;
P. "minor" has the same meaning as set forth in Section 45-1-201 NMSA 1978;
Q. "minor protected person" means a minor for whom a guardian or conservator has been appointed solely because of minority;
R. "parent" means a parent whose parental rights have not been terminated or relinquished;
S. "professional conservator" means an individual or entity that serves as a conservator for more than two individuals who are not related to the conservator by marriage, adoption or third degree of blood or affinity;
T. "professional guardian" means an individual or entity that serves as a guardian for more than two individuals who are not related to the guardian by marriage, adoption or third degree of blood or affinity;
U. "protective proceeding" means a conservatorship proceeding under Section 45-5-401 NMSA 1978;
V. "protected person" means a minor or other person for whom a guardian or conservator has been appointed or other protective order has been made;
W. "qualified health care professional" means a physician, psychologist, physician assistant, nurse practitioner or other health care practitioner whose training and expertise aid in the assessment of functional impairment; and
X. "visitor" means a person who is an appointee of the court who has no personal interest in the proceeding and who has been trained or has the expertise to appropriately evaluate the needs of the person who is allegedly incapacitated. A "visitor" may include, but is not limited to, a psychologist, a social worker, a developmental incapacity professional, a physical and occupational therapist, an educator and a rehabilitation worker.
History: 1953 Comp., § 32A-5-101, enacted by Laws 1975, ch. 257, § 5-101; 1987, ch. 12, § 1; 1989, ch. 252, § 3; 1993, ch. 301, § 1; 2008, ch. 9, § 4; 2009, ch. 159, § 26; 2011, ch. 124, § 52; 2019, ch. 228, § 1.ANNOTATIONS
The 2019 amendment, effective July 1, 2019, defined "professional conservator" and "professional guardian" as used in Chapter 45, Article 5 NMSA 1978; and added new Subsections S and T and redesignated former Subsections S through V as Subsections U through X.
The 2011 amendment, effective January 1, 2012, defined "conservator" and "parent".
The 2009 amendment, effective June 19, 2009, in Subsections J and Q, changed "ward" to "protected person"; in Subsection S, after "person for whom a", added "guardian or"; and deleted Subsection U which defined "ward".
The 2008 amendment, effective May 14, 2008, added "physician assistant" in Subsection T.
The 1993 amendment, effective July 1, 1993, substituted "estate" for "property" throughout the section; substituted "Chapter 45, Article 5 NMSA 1978" for "the Probate Code" in the introductory paragraph; inserted "or medical inability to manage one's income and resources" in Subsection H; substituted "Sections 45-5-424 and 45-5-425" for "Subsection E of Section 45-5-407" in Subsection M; deleted "Subsection B of" preceding "Section" in Subsection O; rewrote Subsection R; and made minor stylistic changes throughout the section.
The 1989 amendment, effective June 16, 1989, made a minor stylistic change in Subsection B; substituted the present provisions in Subsection C for "'disability' is as defined in Section 45-1-201 NMSA 1978"; substituted the present provisions of Subsection F for "'incapacitated person' means any person who is impaired by reason of mental illness, mental deficiency, physical illness or disability, chronic use of drugs, chronic intoxication or other cause, except minority, to the extent that he lacks sufficient understanding or capacity to make or communicate responsible decisions concerning his person or management of his affairs"; added Subsections G through J; redesignated former Subsection G as Subsection K; added Subsections L through O; redesignated former Subsections H through K as Subsections P through S; inserted "conservatorship proceedings pursuant to" in Subsection R; added Subsection T; redesignated former Subsections L and M as Subsections U and V; and in Subsection V substituted all of the language of the first sentence following "means" for "with respect to guardianship proceedings, a person with no personal interest in the proceedings who is trained in law, nursing or social work and is appointed by the district court", and added the second sentence.
Am. Jur. 2d, A.L.R. and C.J.S. references. — Validity of guardianship proceeding based on brainwashing of subject by religious, political or social organization, 44 A.L.R.4th 1207.
14 C.J.S. Chemical Dependents § 4; 39 C.J.S. Guardian and Ward § 2; 57 C.J.S. Mental Health §§ 21 et seq., 108 et seq.