People often think of guardianships in Texas as establishments that are primarily set up for minors; if someone does not have a parent or relative to take care of them, a guardian can be given that responsibility. While this does happen, it is also important to remember that these arrangements may also be used by people as they grow older. In fact, the elderly tend to use them because:
– The effects of aging are getting to be too much.- They have limited mobility or physical abilities.- They are suffering from diseases or other health conditions.- They are suffering from mental ailments.- They need help with day-to-day activities.
The downside to a guardianship is that the rights of the first person, also known as a ward, can be diminished. The guardian is then able to make decision on that person’s behalf. This could include decisions about the ward’s health, assets and estate plan. In some cases, a guardian may be in charge of distributing money or authorizing purchases.
Courts can put specific limits on how much power and authority a guardian has. Because this is such a serious situation, there are legal steps that must be taken to make sure that everything is done properly.
On the other hand, a guardianship can be very helpful. Someone who is suffering from any type of ailment can get the help that he or she needs. As long as the right boundaries are respected and the person’s rights are not infringed upon, this can be a very helpful and positive change in his or her life.
Source: Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, “A Texas Guide to Adult Guardianship” Dec. 01, 2014