Taking care of children is a given. Have you thought about taking care of an aging parent? The trend of becoming a guardian over a parent who can no longer effectively make decisions alone is occurring more, and Texas families need to prepare for the responsibilities. 

The firm of Kelsey, Kelsey & Hickey, PLLC wants to assist you in preparing for the duties of a guardian. Whether a parent’s estate planning documents give you a power of attorney or whether you go through court, making decisions for your aging parent may prove emotionally tricky, especially if you do not know what to expect. Here are a few points to consider. 

The duties of a guardian 

You may understand how a guardian works for children, but what about adults? When you find yourself appointed as the guardian over your elderly parent, it means the court has given you specific responsibilities such as: 

  • Paying bills 
  • Making financial decisions such as investing assets 
  • Meeting basic needs  
  • Overseeing healthcare and making relevant decisions 

As a guardian, you will file an annual report with the court detailing your activities. 

Limitations of the role 

There are some things a guardian cannot do. For instance, you cannot get in trouble for something your parent does or does not do. If your parent makes a poor choice, you are not liable. This extends to financial and criminal decisions. You are also not expected to force-feed your parent medication. If he or she does not want to take it, you cannot and should not force the issue. If you feel like your parent needs mental healthcare, you cannot commit him or her without going through a process. 

This brief explanation scratches the surface of guardianships in Texas elder law. Follow us here to find out more about the process.