Efficient, Timely & Compassionate Representation
When a family makes the difficult decision to pursue guardianship, working with the right law firm can turn an otherwise tedious process into a positive and constructive experience. Whether you are considering a guardianship of the person or estate, or believe a temporary arrangement may better suit your family’s needs, the Law Office of L. Taylor McPherson can assist you and your family from the initial consultation to the final court appointment. Likewise, our experienced attorney and staff stand ready to assist your family in the event of an objection by next-of-kin, if necessary.
Types of Guardianships in Texas
There are two types of guardianship options in Texas, as well as a temporary guardianship under either category. The first is known as a guardianship of the estate, and may become necessary when an individual (known as the proposed “ward”) demonstrates an inability to conduct his or her financial affairs due to mental or physical disability. If a person is appointed guardianship of the person, he or she must make certain the ward’s day-to-day obligations are met, as well as oversee investments with prudence and care.
Guardianship of the person is a separate type of guardianship that may be appropriate when the proposed ward is no longer able to care for his or her health, well-being, and safety – prompting the need for assistance with medical and personal care. The need for a guardianship of the person may be required due to physical and/or mental disability, and the guardian must act in strict accordance with the ward’s best interests at all times.
Guardianships are established by court order, and the process begins when a family member or “interested party” files an Application for Petition of Permanent Guardian. The Petition is generally filed in the county where the proposed ward resides, and must be accompanied by medical documentation detailing the proposed ward’s condition. If the proposed ward is suffering from possible mental incapacity due to birth injury, mental illness, or substance abuse, documentation from a psychologist or psychiatrist will be required as well.
Once the Petition and accompanying documentation are filed, the proposed ward will be served with the information, and a court investigator will be appointed to ensure a guardianship is the “least restrictive manner” to handle the proposed ward’s disabilities – which is a required inquiry under Texas law. If the investigator is in agreement that a guardianship is necessary, he or she will make a recommendation to the county probate court accordingly.
As a final step, the court will hold a guardianship hearing wherein a non-adverse party may object to the appointment. In the end, the court will grant a guardianship if it finds:
- The proposed ward is, in fact, incapacitated;
- It is in the proposed ward’s best interests to appoint a guardian, and;
- Appointing a guardian would best protect the proposed ward’s person and/or property.
As well, the court must make finding during the hearing that venue is proper, the proposed guardian is qualified to serve in the role, and proposed guardian is unable to care for his or her personal and/or financial matters independently.
Contact the Law Office of L. Taylor McPherson Today
If you are considering guardianship over an adult or minor and are not sure how to get started, please contact Tarrant County’s L. Taylor McPherson right away. To schedule a consultation, call 817-502-1144.