Wills & Appointments Of Guardians For Children

Embracing estate planning to help protect your family from unforeseen circumstances reflects a commitment to responsibility and an awareness of how quickly life can change. The laws surrounding guardianship and wills in Texas offer pathways that can assist individuals with providing a stable future for their minor children. Appointing a guardian for your children is an essential step to safeguard them when you cannot do so. 

Demystifying Guardianship in Texas

In Texas, a guardian plays a pivotal role. Guardians have the power to oversee and directly protect a minor child’s welfare by ensuring they receive an education, have access to medical care, and that their financial and emotional needs are met. Though it is a legal duty, a guardian, often appointed through the expression of a will or a declaration of appointment of guardian for child(ren), is entrusted with decisions shaping a child’s future. 

When examining who can assume this significant role, Texas states that “…priority is given to family members and the preferences of the incapacitated or deceased person. If the proposed ward has no family members available to be their guardians, there are certain qualified third parties, known as ‘private professional guardians,’ who the court can appoint.”  Before a guardian is appointed, the court conducts a comprehensive evaluation. They consider variables such as the potential guardian’s relationship with the child, their ability to care for the child, and a thorough check of their criminal history.

Ensuring Your Children’s Future Through Strategic Planning

In Texas, you can choose a guardian for your children in two simple ways: by naming them in your will or completing a Declaration of Appointment of Guardian for My Children in Event of Death or Incapacity.  Your attorney can include the appropriate clause in your will and/or prepare the declaration of appointment of guardian.

In the event of your incapacity, the court intervenes to appoint a guardian. However, it is essential to remember that absent a designation of guardian by you, this may not be the appointment of a person you would have chosen. The courts give deference to the designation of guardian named by the parent.  Absent that, the court’s decision centers around the child’s best interests and the final decision may not align with your values. 

The Law Offices of Debbie J. Cunningham

Understanding and implementing guardianship appointment strategies is a step toward safeguarding your children’s future. Charting a course through the intricacies of guardianship laws and applications demands not only personal reflection but, often, professional guidance. 
At The Law Offices of Debbie J. Cunningham, we prioritize learning about your intentions regarding your children’s future. Guided by experience and an understanding of estate planning and wills, we stand ready to assist you with every step of this journey. For a consultation regarding how to ensure your children’s future stability, schedule your consultation today.

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Law Offices of Debbie J. Cunningham

Debbie Cunningham is an Irving attorney providing affordable estate planning to the Dallas/ Fort-Worth areas. She understands the steps you should take to protect yourself and your loved ones. Debbie is family-focused and wants to ensure her clients are fully informed on the options that are available for their families. Debbie’s own blended family has given her valuable insights into the complexities of family dynamics.

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