Houston Guardianship Attorney
If you have an aging parent or family member who is incapacitated or if you have a disabled child with special needs who is becoming and adult, the Law Office of Jana Fay Bacarisse will assist you in establishing a guardianship.
When is a guardianship necessary?
A Guardian is appointed to protect the interests of a person who has become mentally or physically incapacitated or disabled and is no longer able to manage his or her financial affairs or activities of daily living. A person who has a guardian appointed to protect their interests is known as the "Ward." There are two types of guardianship; guardian of the person, and guardian of the estate. The guardian of the person will make living and medical decisions on behalf of the Ward and the guardian of the estate handles financial matters for the Ward.
If you have a disabled child who has special needs, you are considered the natural guardian of your child. However, once your disabled child becomes an adult, you will need to be appointed as the legal guardian to be legally authorized to make decisions on your adult child's behalf.
Often, elderly family members who have dementia or Alzheimer's disease can no longer handle their personal affairs or they may be vulnerable to financial exploitation. In this instance, a legal guardian may be necessary to protect the elderly person's interests.
If you would like to schedule a consultation to discuss a guardianship or need experienced legal representation in a guardianship case, please contact Jana Fay Bacarisse. Ms. Bacarisse will consult with you to establish the guardianship and will assist the guardian in filing annual reports and annual accountings required by the court. Jana Fay Bacarisse has extensive experience in guardianship proceedings, so you can be confident that you will receive the sound advice and representation you require. Contact guardianship attorney Jana Fay Bacarisse by calling her office, or by email.
Avoid Guardianship proceedings / Alternatives to Guardianship
Although a guardianship is often necessary to protect the interests of a person who has become incapacitated, the best situation is for each individual to have properly drafted "advance directives" such as a statutory durable power of attorney, naming an agent to handle their financial affairs, and a medical power of attorney, designating an agent to make medical decisions. As a person ages and possibly experiences dementia or needs assistance with medical and financial matters, their agent can act under the power of attorney, as a less restrictive alternative to a guardianship.
Powers of attorney or "advance directives" must be signed at a time when the individual has legal capacity to execute the documents and cannot be signed once their mental capacity is in question.
Everyone should have advance directives in place to designate an agent to make decisions on their behalf to be prepared for possible later incapacity. A durable power of attorney and medical power of attorney, may allow you to avoid the necessity of guardianship proceedings in the future.
Contact the Law Office of Jana Fay Bacarisse if you need to prepare powers of attorney or other advance directives.
The Law Office of Jana Fay Bacarisse also offers a full range of estate planning services designed to meet your needs. If you have a disabled child or family member with special needs who is entitled to receive public benefits, a special needs trust can be created to supplement your child's physical and medical needs without disqualifying your child from certain government benefits.
Elder Law and Medicaid Estate Planning
If you believe it might be necessary to place a family member in long term care, the Law Office of Jana Fay Bacarisse acts as co-counsel with other competent elder law attorneys to help qualify individuals for Medicaid, if funds are not available to cover the cost of long term care. Long term care is very costly and if you do not have long term care insurance, there are laws in place to allow you to protect certain assets without depleting your retirement and savings to fund long term care for your spouse.
If you would like a consultation regarding any of these matters, call Jana Fay Bacarisse or email her today.