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If you have minor children or special needs children, how you handle the issue of guardianship should be an important part of your estate plan. Preparing for the care of your family or even care for yourself if you become incapacitated is one of the most important life factors that you need to consider. Our attorneys have deep knowledge and expertise in the guardianship laws of Texas, and can help guide you toward the best approaches to take, from designating guardianship to using other aspects of your estate plan to achieve the same ends.

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Guardianship for Special Needs Children

There are other documents – such as power of attorney, medical power of attorney, wills and living wills – that can achieve many of your objectives, but if you have a special needs child or children that won’t be able to care for themselves after they reach legal age, how you handle guardianship can be critical. If your child will not be able to manage his or her own affairs, legal guardianship of the person and of the estate may be required. This allows you or the guardian to make all important decisions for the child, including living arrangements and medical care. Applying for guardianship at a minimum of within six months of your child’s eighteenth birthday is advisable.

Special Needs Trusts

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A Special Needs Trust sets aside money in an account to be used to pay for personal expenses and medical needs of a physically or mentally challenged adult or child, and is another way to provide care and financial security for the person. It can provide ongoing funds for expenses not covered by medical insurance and since the money is not controlled by the disabled person, that child can still qualify for public benefits. It can also reduce tax liability for parents and family members. Learn more about Special Needs Trusts on our Trusts page.

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