A guardianship must be appointed by a probate court and is usually a last resort. It legally allows a person to be the guardian of another person, known as the ward, who is incapacitated and unable to take care of themselves. The guardian assumes responsibility for their ward and can make decisions in their interest. Guardianships in Texas generally only apply to adults, not minor children. For custody of a child, the term conservatorship is used in Texas law.
It is very important to hire an attorney to file for guardianship, especially if you are seeking guardianship for someone else. While you have every right to represent yourself in court, you can only represent the proposed ward if you are a licensed attorney.
If you are seeking guardianship for yourself, it is recommended to hire an attorney. They can be helpful with all of the legal aspects of filing for guardianship, starting from filing the application to appearing at the final hearing. Having an experienced attorney can be beneficial when it comes to the well-being of the proposed ward.
There are different types of guardianship that can apply to different circumstances:
Before deciding to file for legal guardianship in Weatherford, TX, it is important to determine if guardianship is absolutely necessary and the only option for your and the potential ward’s situation. It is also imperative to find someone who will be a suitable guardian. To establish guardianship in Texas, there is a legal process that must be followed:
Once a guardian is appointed, they are usually required to submit reports to the court every so often regarding the well-being of the ward, how they are doing with managing affairs, and any other information that may be relevant. It is also possible for the court to periodically investigate the guardian to be sure they are fulfilling their duties.
There are advantages and disadvantages to guardianship, mainly for the wards. A pro to this arrangement for a ward could be having someone to make all important decisions for them, whether they are personal, medical, or financial, when they are unable to. Of course, this is most beneficial if the guardian is trustworthy and intent on making decisions in the interest of their ward.
Another possible pro to guardianship is that they are closely monitored by the court to make sure guardians are fulfilling their responsibilities to their ward. This provides a level of protection for wards and their assets.
A con to guardianship is that it is very restrictive for the ward. They may end up having little to no control over the decisions that are made about their life. This loss of autonomy can be a big drawback for this kind of legal arrangement. Moreover, having the court so heavily involved in a guardianship could ultimately feel intrusive for the ward, even though the arrangement is meant to be helpful.
While the court is overseeing a guardianship, in some rare cases, a guardian may still abuse their position and take advantage of a ward. This is why it is so important to carefully select a guardian for a potential ward. The process to terminate a guardianship can be difficult if a ward wants to have control over their own life again or defend themselves against guardianship. In this instance, it may be necessary for the ward to hire a defense lawyer to plead their case.
It is a difficult choice to seek a guardian for someone you care about, and a decision like this should not be made lightly. If you are thinking of establishing guardianship for someone, you need to understand the legal implications that come with it, as well as the complicated legal process. The Law Firm of William A. Walsh can assist you as you go forward. Contact our office today to consult with a Weatherford guardianship attorney.