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What evidence do families need to obtain an adult guardianship?

On Behalf of | Jan 5, 2024 | Guardianships |

There are many scenarios in which Texas families may need to pursue legal guardianship on behalf of a loved one. Sometimes, a young adult with special needs is about to turn 18 and would no longer be subject to family oversight and protection. Other times, challenges related to advanced age make people worry about someone’s ability to continue living on their own later in life.

Guardianship delegates crucial authority to other adults when someone cannot meet their own daily needs or properly manage their finances. How can families establish the necessary proof that a guardianship is important for the safety of an older family member?

By gathering financial and medical evidence

If someone has repeatedly paid bills late in recent months after a lifetime of timely and diligent financial management, that might be a warning sign of cognitive decline. Financial records can help show that someone struggles to manage their own affairs.

Other times, medical professionals may provide conclusive evidence about someone’s struggle by diagnosing them with conditions like dementia or Alzheimer’s disease. When it is clear that someone has struggled to meet their own needs or when they have medical conditions that may prevent them from doing so, the Texas civil courts may agree to appoint a guardian to manage their affairs.

By bringing in witnesses

Professionals such as daily care workers providing support in assisted living facilities may know through direct experience how much someone has begun to struggle with the management of their daily life. A variety of different professionals who regularly interact with an older adult can provide details about the challenges that they face.

Other times, expert witnesses familiar with a particular diagnosis could help give information to the courts about how someone’s condition would likely progress and why they would need the support of a guardian in the future. Typically, families seeking guardianship require clear and convincing evidence to present to the courts that someone has begun to struggle with managing their own affairs and needs the support of another adult.

Many older adults resent the idea of guardianship, which means that families taking such steps may want to ensure that they have enough evidence before going to court, as they may otherwise risk damaging their relationship with their loved one. Learning more about guardianship in Texas may benefit those who feel concerned about an older adult’s ability to continue living independently.