You cannot make an unwilling parent move into assisted living unless you have guardianship (also known as conservatorship) over them. Obtaining this is a difficult and lengthy process, and the courts don’t grant it lightly. In most cases, it’s more effective to try to persuade your loved one to move into assisted living voluntarily rather than forcing the issue.

Aging can be a scary issue for many people, and moving into an assisted living community is something some seniors see as a loss of freedom. Giving your loved one a chance to consider assisted living at their own pace and visiting local communities to see what life is like there can help them to feel comfortable with the idea. 

Have The Conversation Early And Take Things Slowly

Rushing the process of moving into an assisted living community will likely cause the senior to resist. Try to work with your parent and gently encourage them to consider the idea at their own pace. Use any issues the senior encounters as teachable moments so they can see for themself how they could be better off in an assisted living facility. Focus on the positives and how having people to help them at an assisted living facility would give them more time rather than take away their independence.

Legal Guardianship Is Required to Make Decisions For Your Parent

If your elderly parent can’t look after themself and isn’t mentally capable of making decisions about their care, you may be able to obtain legal guardianship over them. This requires going to court to prove that your loved one needs someone to look after them in that way. The legal process isn’t an easy one. so it’s not something that should be entered into lightly. If you’re concerned about your parent’s welfare and are considering taking this route to move your parent into an assisted living community, the National Guardianship Association may be able to offer you advice on the process.