San Antonio Guardianship Lawyer

Depending on your family circumstances, when you need to seek guardianship of another person, it could be a decision everyone else in the family agrees with and supports, or it could be a contentious decision that is creating hard feelings. Either way, it is a situation that needs the help of our San Antonio guardianship lawyer.

The team at Amsberry Law Firm can help you navigate the frequently complex legal requirements necessary to take this step to protect a disabled or incapacitated adult or to protect another person with whom you have a close relationship. Yet, we also understand that cases like this need to involve compassionate representation and a willingness on our part to listen to your and your family’s hopes for the resolution of this situation. We do not shy away from challenging cases regarding establishing legal guardianship. For an initial consultation, call our child guardianship attorney today at (210) 354-2244. We serve the San Antonio area, including Bexar County and the surrounding counties.

Our San Antonio Guardianship Lawyer Knows All Aspects of Guardianship Law

Establishing guardianship involves creating a legal relationship between a ward and a guardian. The ward is the person who needs help with managing life, while the guardian is the person who has the legal right to manage various aspects of the ward’s life. Most of the time, the ward will be an incapacitated adult, which means that the adult has a mental condition, a physical condition, or both that prevent the adult from being able to care for himself or herself. Some of the aspects of care that the ward may not be able to handle include:

  • Obtaining food
  • Obtaining clothing
  • Obtaining shelter
  • Managing medical care requirements
  • Managing day-to-day grooming
  • Managing personal finances.

Our San Antonio Guardianship Lawyer Will Help You Determine What Does a Legal Guardian Do

Some wards who need the protection of guardianship will be able to handle some matters on their own, while needing help with other matters. When you apply to become a guardian, we will need to establish the type of guardian you will be.

  • Guardian of the person: This means the guardian will help the ward with personal care and physical well-being, including obtaining and maintaining housing and making decisions about medical care.
  • Guardian of the estate: This means the guardian will control the financial affairs of the ward, including managing money and property the ward owns.

If the ward only needs help with one of these items, the court may name you as a guardian only in that area. If the ward needs help with both items, the court may name you as the guardian for both areas. Our San Antonio guardianship lawyer can help you determine what type of guardianship is appropriate to request for your case.

Our Child Guardianship Attorney Can Help You Follow the Multiple Steps Required

To become a guardian, you will have to follow a series of steps, each of which is vital to the legal process of establishing guardianship in Texas. Our legal guardianship lawyer can help you with the steps, which can include:

  • Determining the appropriate application documents to file with the probate courts in your jurisdiction, such as the Bexar County probate courts in San Antonio
  • Collecting affidavits from medical professionals who can attest to the ward’s physical incapacity
  • Collecting affidavits from mental health professionals who can attest to the ward’s mental incapacity
  • Proving that you have the legal right to serve as the ward’s guardian
  • Posting a monetary bond that serves as an “insurance policy” to ensure that you will manage the ward’s finances properly and not mix the ward’s finances with your personal finances
  • Sign under oath the document that guarantees you will perform the legal duties and requirements of the guardian properly and to the best of your abilities.

After you become the guardian of the ward, you will need to file a report each year that re-establishes the need for your guardianship of the ward. You must re-establish your monetary bond each year as well. As you can imagine, it is a lot of work to serve as a guardian and to follow the process to re-establish your guardianship each year. Our child guardianship attorney can help you explore the advantages and disadvantages of establishing guardianship, determining whether this is the route you want to take.

Our Guardianship Attorney in San Antonio Can Help With Contesting an Established Guardian

Sometimes, the court may name someone as a guardian, but you believe this person is ill-equipped or is unable to perform the duties the ward requires. Perhaps the guardian was doing a good job initially, but the guardian now is avoiding important duties, placing the safety and health of the ward in jeopardy. Perhaps you believe the ward no longer needs the services of a guardian.

In a case like this, you have the right to contest a guardianship. You do not have to make this accusation because you want to become the guardian, although you can seek guardianship. The contesting of someone as a guardian can occur simply because you have concern over the welfare of the ward in question.

Challenging someone’s appointment as a guardian is a difficult process. Once the guardian is in place, removing the guardian requires significant evidence and the filing of certain motions with the court. At Amsberry Law Firm, you can hire us to do this work on your behalf, discussing your goals for this process during our initial consultation.

We Provide Special Needs Guardianship Attorney Services in the San Antonio Area

One of the most common reasons for parents to establish a legal guardianship situation is when they have a special needs child. Special needs children, even after becoming adults, may never be able to make financial decisions alone or to physically care for themselves. To ensure the special needs children have the care and protection they need throughout their adult lives, establishing guardianship is important.

Another reason why parents seek the help of our special needs guardianship attorney is to deal with the legal consequences of the special needs child’s turning 18 years old. When a child turns 18 in Texas, the child receives all the legal rights of an adult. However, a special needs child may be unable to handle these rights. Such children may need the help of a guardian to keep them safe.

What Happens When the Adult With Special Needs Receives a Guardian?

When you seek a guardian for the 18-year-old with special needs, who now is a legal adult, the management of the rights of the special needs adult shift to the person named as the guardian. As we discussed earlier, the special needs adult would need to receive an incapacitated designation (either mentally, physically, or both) before guardianship would be a possibility. If the special needs adult has a partial incapacity, it is possible that the court will limit the guardian’s rights over the special needs ward to only those areas of the ward’s life that require help. Perhaps the special needs adult can manage financially but needs help with physical care, resulting in a partial incapacity finding.

A parent may want to seek appointment as a guardian over a special needs teenage child who will soon turn 18. Our special needs guardianship attorney will be able to help you accomplish this. We can walk you through all the steps required to complete the process, which can be quite complex, especially for someone going through it for the first time. Contact our San Antonio guardianship lawyer at (210) 354-2244 for an initial consultation today.

Common Questions for Our Legal Guardianship Lawyer

At Amsberry Law Firm, we always make ourselves available to answer any questions our clients have for us. Our San Antonio guardianship lawyer believes strongly in the importance of keeping you updated on your case at every step. Here are many of the most common questions we receive as a guardian lawyer, giving you important background information and helping you see how we handle situations that may apply to your case.

What is guardianship in law in Texas?

In Texas, guardianship involves creating a legal relationship between the guardian, who is the person overseeing and managing the other person’s life, and the ward, who is the person receiving help with life management.

Do I need to worry about guardianship of an estate?

Often, establishing guardianship of an incapacitated person also involves handling that person’s estate. This can add some complexity to the situation. Each case will have its own nuances and requirements. When we meet with you and learn about your situation, we can help you determine whether you need the services of our firm’s legal guardianship lawyer together with those of our estate planning attorney.

How does the court decide the person most likely to be appointed as the guardian?

Texas Estates Code Chapter 1104 lists the rules for the order of selecting people to become the guardian of a child or of an incapacitated adult. Additionally, the law requires that the establishment of the guardian must be someone who will act in the best interests of the person who needs the guardian. If you are unsure whether you qualify to serve as a guardian for a particular person, of whether you will be able to handle the duties required, our San Antonio guardianship lawyer can help you understand how the law works in this area.

Is guardianship the only option for helping an incapacitated adult?

If the incapacitated adult only needs a little bit of help with life and financial management, rather than a full guardianship situation, we can explore some different legal options for you. For example, perhaps you simply need a supported decision-making agreement, a special needs trust, or a medical power of attorney. Amsberry Law Firm can help you with all these documents and with figuring out which document will work best for your situation.

What does it cost to hire your guardianship attorney in San Antonio?

Our fees depend on the number of different services we provide for you, as well as the amount of time we will spend on your case. Once we meet with you initially and gain an idea of the goals you have for this process, we can give you a better idea of the fees we will charge for our services.

Should I pre-designate a guardian for myself or my children?

If you want to protect yourself and your family in case you become incapacitated for any reason in the future, you have the right to create a Designation of Guardian in Advance of Need document. This allows you to designate the specific guardian you want to use, rather than having the court decide. Parents of disabled children often use this document to ensure the child receives the necessary care in case of an accident involving the parents. Our guardianship attorney in San Antonio can draw up this document for you, ensuring it will be legally binding, should you ever become incapacitated.

Trust Our San Antonio Guardianship Lawyer for All Your Legal Needs

Our guardian lawyer knows that guardianship cases evoke significant emotions from all parties. We understand that you need representatives who will listen to your concerns and who will stand by your side and support you throughout this process, especially if it is causing contention inside the family.

However, we also know that you want to be certain that our guardianship attorney in San Antonio handles all the legal aspects of your case perfectly. When dealing with establishing guardianship that ensures the safest possible future for a family member, a close friend, or a special needs child who needs protection, there is no room for error. Trust that Amsberry Law Firm will be able to focus on our duties of creating the proper legal documents and of ensuring that every step the law requires will occur as smoothly as possible, while also giving you the support you need to move forward with this decision.

Our Guardian Lawyer Will Always Have Your and Your Ward’s Best Interests in Mind

Although you could attempt to have just any Texas attorney draw up the legal documents for your attempt to establish guardianship, understand that experience and absolute familiarity with guardianship laws in Texas are the key to avoiding errors and delays along the way.

Russell Amsberry founded Amsberry Law Firm in 1995, focusing on family law, probate law, and estate law, among other areas. Through our many years of experience with handling similar cases, we know how to keep your guardianship case on track. For a review of your case, contact our San Antonio guardianship lawyer today at (210) 354-2244. We serve clients who live in San Antonio, as well as those who live in the nearby counties in southern Texas. Contact us today to see how we can help you and your situation.

Attorney Russell Amsberry

Attorney Russell J.G. Amsberry

Attorney Russell J.G. Amsberry founded the Amsberry Law Firm in 1995 with the goal of providing clients with exceptional, focused representation on their issues. His success as a legal advocate has been reflected in the numerous professional honors he has received, such as speaking engagements and inclusion in Scene in SA magazine’s listing of the best lawyers in San Antonio, a Distinguished rating from Martindale-Hubble, and an amazing rating from Avvo. [ Attorney Bio ]