When is guardianship necessary?

Guardianship may be necessary when a person is no longer able to take care of themselves, and there is a risk to them unless someone steps into their shoes and takes full legal responsibility for them.

This may apply to an elderly person, to a person who is mentally challenged, or during a short-term accident or disability. Guardianships provide the highest level of protection and require annual reports to verify the person is being taken care of and that there is no self-dealing.

How does one Become a Guardian?

In Texas, guardianship provides for an individual’s care as well as their money while preserving the individual’s independence and right to make decisions affecting their life as far as possible. Texas courts have the authority to appoint guardians for those who need help managing their affairs. The process for appointing a guardian in Texas includes filing an application with the court, attending a hearing before a judge, and the judge appointing a guardian, should it be determined that one is needed, and it is in the best interest of the proposed ward. 

Alternatives to Guardianship

A person with a guardian loses some of their rights, so it is often suggested that other options and avenues be explored before a guardian is appointed. Alternatives to try before guardianship include:

  • Appointing someone to help manage money and ensure bills are paid
  • Appointing someone to help make important decisions, including health care
  • Having the person enrolled in any community services available, including any available Medicaid programs

It’s important to retain a qualified attorney to assist in these matters. The Barrera Law Firm is participating in telephonic free consultations and select in-person interviews.


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