Probate, Estate Planning, and Guardianship Lawyer in Conroe, Texas
Billings Law provides you with superior legal representation
The probate court serving Montgomery County is in downtown Conroe. Our office handles probate and guardianship cases in the county and Ms. Adkins and Ms. Billings can frequently be seen in the area. Our goal is to use our expertise and experience to make sure you have the information you need to make decisions about providing for your family if you become unable to care for yourself or in case of your death. In the same vein, we can help you determine the right plan for your family if you have a child with special needs.
Probate Probate in Texas refers to the legal process of handling someone’s estate once they have passed away. If you have a valid Will, your family will probate it at your death in order to have an executor appointed and allow the executor to distribute your estate in accordance with the Will.
If someone passes away without a Will, they are called intestate. Several options exist to handle an intestate estate, and the most common is to request that a court make a legal determination of the heirs (called an “heirship”) and then appoint an administrator to distribute the assets of the estate to the heirs. We will discuss the details of the estate with you, including any assets and any potential creditors, and make a decision together about how best to handle a given situation.
All probate cases are a matter of public record, and the county clerk’s office in Conroe is where you can obtain information on cases that have been filed in Montgomery County. The county clerk’s office is also where a Will is filed as part of the probate process.
Estate Planning is a broad category that includes the creation of Wills, trusts, and other ancillary documents that fit within your plan for your estate. The goal of the documents is to avoid unnecessary legal action in the future and give your family a clear roadmap of your wishes and how various situations will be handled.
For example, having a properly executed financial power of attorney and a properly executed medical power of attorney may prevent the need for a legal guardianship for you if you are injured in a car accident and no longer able to take care of yourself or handle your own finances. This applies all throughout Texas including Humble, Spring, and Huffman in Harris County as well. As another example, having a testamentary trust inside your Will makes it possible for minor grandchildren to inherit without the need for court approval or can provide for a grandchild with special needs to inherit without interfering with needs-based government benefits.
In Texas, a guardianship can be established for someone that is unable to care for themselves and/or manage their own finances. The person is considered to be legally incapacitated. The most common situations involve the development of dementia in the elderly, brain injuries sustained due to injury or illness, and children with special needs that are about to turn eighteen. A guardian who is appointed for another person has the right to determine where the person resides, consent to medical care, and if there is an estate, manage the estate to provide for the person with court supervision. For a child with special needs who has a disability that makes them legally incapacitated, and the disability will continue after they reach the age of eighteen, a guardianship case can be commenced six months prior to their eighteenth birthday. It is important for parents and caregivers to take action timely so that there is no gap in being able to consent to medical care or other necessary services for the child.
One organization that serves Montgomery County’s special needs population including Conroe, Porter, and the Woodlands is Tri-County, and their primary office location is located in Conroe. Ms. Adkins has experience with coordinating services with their organization as well as helping families determine what other benefits may be available.