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HB 2665 would amend the
Estates Code to authorize the child of a ward to file an application
court requesting access to the ward, including visitation or
communication with the ward. The court would be required to schedule a
hearing within 60 days of receipt of the application, unless required to
schedule an emergency hearing because the ward's death is imminent. The
bill would require the
guardian of a ward to be
personally served with a copy of the application and cited to appear
21 days before the date of the hearing in the case of a standard
as soon as possible in the case of an emergency hearing. The court
would be required to issue an order after the hearing that may prohibit
the guardian of a
ward from preventing the applicant access to the ward if shown through
evidence that the ward desires contact and to specify terms of access.
The court would be authorized to consider prior protective orders
issued against the applicant when issuing or modifying an order.
Minor changes were made that do not change our vote recommendation. The second chamber sponsor is Senator Zaffirini.
First chamber recommendation:
This bill affirms the principle of individual liberty by protecting rights of individuals who may lack the capacity to assert them. It would help protect the rights of an individual who becomes incapacitated and may be in the care of his or her spouse.
This bill would allow the child of a ward of the court to have access to a parent when access has been denied by a guardian or when a protective order has been issued.
For these reasons, we support HB 2665.