Texas Probate Law provides a legal framework for individuals to apply for guardianship responsibilities over another person who is unable to make their own decisions due to incapacity, such as dementia. However, becoming a guardian also comes with certain responsibilities and consequences if those responsibilities are not fulfilled. In this article, we will examine the case of an 87-year-old woman with dementia who lives alone and refuses assistance, and consider the potential consequences for the appointed guardian if they allow her to continue living in this manner.
The Importance of Guardianship in Texas:
Guardianship is a legal relationship established between a person who is unable to make their own decisions due to incapacity, and the person appointed to make decisions on their behalf. The appointed guardian is granted the power to make decisions regarding the ward’s healthcare, living arrangements, and financial affairs. In Texas, guardianship is often necessary when a person becomes incapacitated due to age, illness, or injury, and is no longer able to make informed decisions about their own well-being.
Responsibilities of Guardians Under Texas Probate Law:
Under Texas Probate Law, the guardian is required to act in the best interests of the ward. This includes making decisions about the ward’s health and safety, and ensuring that the ward is not subjected to abuse, neglect, or exploitation. If the ward’s doctor has advised them not to be alone, and the guardian is aware of this advice, it could be argued that the guardian has a responsibility to ensure the ward is not living alone.
Potential Consequences for Guardians:
If the ward were to experience an accident or illness while living alone, and the guardian was aware of the risks and failed to take action to prevent harm, they could be held liable for any harm that results. For example, if the ward were to fall and break their hip, the guardian could be held responsible for any medical expenses or damages that result from the fall if they failed to take action to prevent it.
In conclusion, while becoming a guardian can provide peace of mind and the ability to make important decisions on behalf of an incapacitated loved one, it also carries a certain level of responsibility. It is important for guardians to understand their responsibilities under Texas Probate Law, and to act in the best interests of the ward at all times.
Do you need help with a probate matter in Austin or the surrounding area? We are Austin probate attorneys. We help clients navigate the probate process. Call today for a free confidential consultation, 512-273-7444.
Our Austin Probate Attorneys provide a full range of probate services to our clients, including helping with guardianships. Affordable rates, fixed fees, and payment plans are available. We provide step-by-step instructions, guidance, checklists, and more for completing the probate process. We have years of combined experience we can use to support and guide you with probate and estate matters. Call us today for a FREE attorney consultation.
The content of this website is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice. The information presented may not apply to your situation and should not be acted upon without consulting a qualified probate attorney. We encourage you to seek the advice of a competent attorney with any legal questions you may have.