Judge decides woman with Down syndrome can choose guardian

Many parents in Hudspeth County look forward to having happy, independent adult children. For some parents, however, they know their children will never be truly independent, most often because of a disability or accident. When adult children are not able to make decisions for themselves, it is essential that the children be appointed guardians. While a guardian should not completely run a person’s life or go against the incapacitated person’s wishes, the guardian provides support and care that the individual is otherwise unable to provide for him- or herself.

Although many people in need of guardians will choose their parents, not all will, and one judge has determined that a person needing a guardian should have some say in who his or her guardian is. Although this did not happen in Texas, judges here may also choose to listen to the disabled person’s preferences as to who his or her guardian is.

The 29-year-old woman at the heart of this matter has Down syndrome and the judge made it clear that she needed to have a guardian. He found that she was unable to remain entirely indpendent, but that he was required to listen to her preferences.

The young woman’s mother and stepfather had filed for guardianship and wanted to put her in a group home. The young woman, however, wanted to live with her friends, a couple that currently employ her to work in their thrift shop. Had her parents won guardianship, they would have been able to dictate who she spends her time with, where she lives and what medical treatments she would recieve.

Source:USA TODAY, “Judge: Woman with Down syndrome can live with friends,” Natalie DiBlasio, Aug. 3, 2013