Guardianship is a responsibility that can be challenging to take on without clear expert legal advice. Before moving forward with guardianship, you should ensure you fully grasp what it means to be a guardian. Texas has several types of guardianship, and a guardian can have full or limited authority. Understanding the differences between full and limited guardianship may be helpful as you make your decision.
Texas guardianship is a serious legal responsibility. Retain the legal services of Stepp & Sullivan to ensure you are well-informed and protected as you consider moving forward with guardianship. Should you decide to take on the role of a loved one’s guardian, our firm can represent you and fight for your best interests.
What Does Guardianship in Texas Entail?
Texas guardianship is a formal legal arrangement where a court after an Application is filed and a hearing is held, appoints a guardian to care for a person incapable of taking care of themselves, also referred to as an incapacitated person. This person may be a minor, elderly adult, developmentally disabled adult, or a person who is ineligible to receive any government assistance without an appointed guardian.
Guardianship is typically only utilized whenever there are no other options for the person taking care of themselves, such as more passive assistance. Guardianship is often permanent.
Limited Guardianship Versus Full Guardianship
Guardians ensure that their ward is taken care of and that their finances are managed while, to the greatest extent possible, maintaining their independence and the ability to make choices that can seriously affect their lives. The court decides whether to choose a guardian after an Application for guardianship is filed and whether to name a full or limited guardian. A guardian may be appointed by Texas courts to have complete, or limited control over the individual, their estate, or both.
Limited Guardianship of a Person and Estate
A limited guardian has restricted powers over a person or their estate. Before granting a limited guardianship, the court must indicate if a potential ward lacks the necessary capacity, with support, to make decisions about where to live, whom to vote for, how to drive, and whether to get married. A limited guardian is appointed if a person is found to be partially incapacitated.
In a limited guardianship, the court places certain restrictions on which aspects of the ward’s person or estate they can exercise authority over. As a result, the guardian has the power to make some decisions on the ward’s behalf, but the court may permit the ward to make other decisions independently.
Full Guardianship of a Person and Estate
Full guardianships relieve incapacitated people of their right to make important life decisions. A person with full guardianship is legally responsible for making all personal decisions for their ward. They have full authority over their ward’s personal rights within the parameters of the court order.
Consult a Knowledgeable Certified Texas Guardianship Lawyer Before Making a Decision
A guardian must make numerous personal and property decisions on behalf of their ward while acting in their best interest. Guardianship is a major responsibility, and giving someone a guardian leaves them vulnerable to someone else’s decision-making. With such a decision, it is essential to take the time necessary to grasp what that decision entails fully.
Partnering with a Certified Texas guardianship lawyer can give you the legal resources necessary to make a well-informed decision. At Stepp & Sullivan, we have more than 70 years of combined legal experience. Over the years, we have gained invaluable knowledge of guardianship law and experience handling Guardianship cases. Contact us at (713) 336-7200 or through our contact form if you need representation in Texas.