Skip to main content

My mother in law want go to the doctor and we have tried over and over she is in real bad health what now

Beaumont, TX |

she has a bad infection in her big toe and is a diabetic but she want go to doctor she is endangering herself please help us to find what to do

Attorney Answers 3


I am an attorney in Alabama, so I cannot offer legal advice on a Texas issue. I would like to point out a few possible avenues that could be pursued in Alabama that may also exist in Texas. These answer assume that she didn't do a power of attorney or healthcare power of attorney.

First, the Alabama Department of Human Resources (DHR) is charged with protection of both children and adults. If an elderly person is not caring for herself or is being abused, DHR can remove them from their current situation, get them the proper healthcare, and basically take of the management of their lives if the situation warrants and the courts agree. This is a rather drastic step because while DHR will sometimes work with the family and even let the family take charge of the situation, they do not have to. However, the services are free in Alabama and can work very quickly in some situations. The relevant Texas state agency should have some information available on-line, but that information may not address your situation. You should probably contact an elder law attorney or a trusts & estates attorney and talk to them.

Second, the family can petition the relevant court to be appointed to make decisions. In Alabama, this would be called a guardianship case or a protective proceeding. This process is usually slower and will have legal fees and court costs associated with it. But if the court agrees with the family, then you have more control, subject to state law and court approval.

Before determining one of the two paths, I would advise you to find an elder law attorney or a trusts & estates attorney in your mother-in-law's county and discuss the issue with him or her.

I wish you all the best

Thad A. Davis is an Alabama attorney. As such, his responses on this site are limited to his understanding of the facts as cited in the posted question and his understanding of the law in his state. No answer should be considered legal advice, nor does an answer create an attorney-client relationship. Anyone desiring specific legal advice should consult an attorney in the relevant state.

Mark as helpful

1 lawyer agrees


In addition to Mr. Davis' answer you can contact your local Area Agency on Aging. They may have a hotline with people knowledgeable about the resources in your community.

Nothing stated in this answer is intended to provide legal advice or to create an attorney client relationship.

Mark as helpful


Can I assume when you say "want go" you mean won't or will not go? If she is endangering herself all states have an Adult Protective Services division so you may need to find the one in Texas. It may also be that you need to set up a Conservatorship proceeding for her. Diabetes is a serious condition and her toe may have to be amputated if she does not care for her feet well. I have seen it. If she is in a clear state of mind, she should also look at an Advance Directive to state what kind of care she wants if she is unable to make her own decisions as well as a POA for asset management and a will.

Use the web site to find an attorney in your area. In addition to that, contact your local bar association for referral to an attorney who specializes in this or talk to friends and neighbors to ask about an attorney they have used and liked. Often, but not always, the attorney will do an initial consultation free of charge. You will then be in a better position to determine what to do next. Best of luck to you!

If you liked this answer, click on the thumbs up! Thanks. Eliz. C. A. Johnson Post Office Box 8 Danville, California 94526-0008 Legal disclaimer: I do not practice law in any state but California. As such, any responses to posted inquiries, such as the one above, are limited to a general understanding of law in California and not to any other jurisdiction. In addition, no response to any posted inquiry should be deemed to constitute legal advice, nor to constitute the existence of an attorney/client or other contractual or fiduciary relationship, inasmuch as legal advice can only be provided in circumstances in which the attorney is able to ask questions of the person seeking legal advice and to thus gather appropriate information.

Mark as helpful

Wills and estates topics

Recommended articles about Wills and estates

What others are asking

Can't find what you're looking for?

Post a free question on our public forum.

Ask a Question

- or -

Search for lawyers by reviews and ratings.

Find a Lawyer

Browse all legal topics