Certain family issues may result in a Texas resident being appointed a guardian. Those who are under the care of a guardian are known as wards. Generally speaking, seeking guardianship is an option of last resort. This is because it can result in the ward losing key rights. Prior to asking a judge to appoint a guardian, it may be possible to appoint or hire someone to manage an individual's finances or help make health care decisions.
A person could be a ward either temporarily or permanently depending on if their condition improves. The process of seeking guardianship starts by filing an application with the appropriate court. Once the paperwork has been received, a hearing will be scheduled. After the hearing, the judge will decide if an individual needs to have a guardian to protect their best interests.
There are many good reasons why a parent or adult child could be assigned a guardian. For instance, an adult son or daughter who is developmentally disabled may need consistent care that a parent may not be able to provide. As a person ages, they might develop dementia or other mental issues. Without a full-time guardian, that person could be vulnerable to a wide range of financial or other problems.
It may be a good idea to speak with an attorney prior to going through the guardianship process. An attorney could help a person learn more about what a guardian does and what authority a guardian could have. A legal professional may also be able to highlight other options such as putting a person into a long-term care facility. An independent living facility might be ideal for those who need less assistance on a daily basis.