In most cases, biological parents serve as legal guardians who make all decisions regarding their children’s welfare. However, the Texas court system may appoint someone else to fill this role when a child’s parents cannot fulfill these obligations because of death, incapacity or another reason.
If you disagree with the court’s decision about guardianship of a minor, these are the steps you must follow.
Familiarize yourself with guardianship standards
Texas courts disqualify anyone with a questionable history from obtaining guardianship of a minor, including:
- Someone with a drug or sexual misconduct conviction
- Someone with massive debt
- Someone with a significant disability
Individuals seeking to replace an existing guardian must prove why they are a more suitable choice to raise the minor.
File a petition
Living parents or current guardians may agree that transferring guardianship will benefit a child. However, when this is impossible, or they refuse to consider a new arrangement, you may file a petition requesting consideration for guardianship in the probate court where the minor lives. The current guardians must receive notice of the petition before all parties appear in court to present their cases before a judge.
Gather evidence to support your request
During a court hearing, you will have an opportunity to present evidence supporting your suitability for guardianship. Evidence may include a child’s medical and school records or witness testimony to support your claims.
Obtain state certification
You must undergo a guardianship certification process even if the court deems the current guardian unsuitable. Certification involves a background check and a comprehensive exam that ensures your knowledge of Texas guardianship laws.
Contesting guardianship in Texas requires presenting a solid case that proves you are the most suitable candidate to raise a child.