Although a range of situations applies to guardianship, the subject or ward is typically a minor or a person who has become incapacitated for a variety of reasons with medical causes such as dementia or Alzheimer’s a recurring factor.
The process of appointing a guardian is set out under Texas law and starts with an application filed with the appropriate court typically where the ward lives. When dealing with an incapacitated adult, the application includes the medical results of a licensed physician or psychologist which sets forth the ward’s cognitive condition and the reasons why guardianship is the recommended course of action.
The court after a notice hearing will make the determination as to whether the appointment of the guardianship is necessary and meets legal standards. In so doing, the court will follow the legal standards in making that disposition.
A guardian can also be appointed in emergency situations typically when Adult Protective Services or Child Protective Services are involved. A hearing is held within ten days of the application and the appointment remains in place for 60 days when the court decides whether a permanent guardianship is necessary.
It is not uncommon for guardianships to become contested which can create – unfortunately – complexity and emotion for the families involved. In these situations, it is essential to find experienced counsel able to offer not only the range of services available but a strong and caring hand during the process itself.
Feel free to give us a call to find out more about Guardianship and whether it is the right choice for your loved one.
Wills & Estate Planning: Wills, Trusts, & Guardianships