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  S.B. No. 1606
 
 
 
 
AN ACT
  relating to evidence and orders regarding intellectual disability
  or mental condition in certain guardianship proceedings.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Section 1101.104, Estates Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 1101.104.  EXAMINATIONS AND DOCUMENTATION REGARDING
  INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY. (a)  If an intellectual disability is the
  basis of the proposed ward's alleged incapacity, the court may not
  grant an application to create a guardianship for the proposed ward
  unless the applicant presents to the court a written letter or
  certificate that:
               (1)  complies with Sections 1101.103(a) and (b); or
               (2)  shows that not earlier than 24 months before the
  hearing date:
                     (A)  the proposed ward has been examined by a
  physician or psychologist licensed in this state or certified by
  the Health and Human [Department of Aging and Disability] Services
  Commission to perform the examination, in accordance with rules of
  the executive commissioner of the commission [Health and Human
  Services Commission] governing examinations of that kind, and the
  physician's or psychologist's written findings and recommendations
  include a determination of an intellectual disability; or
                     (B)  a physician or psychologist licensed in this
  state or certified by the Health and Human [Department of Aging and
  Disability] Services Commission to perform examinations described
  by Paragraph (A) updated or endorsed in writing a prior
  determination of an intellectual disability for the proposed ward
  made by a physician or psychologist licensed in this state or
  certified by the commission [department].
         (b)  A physician or psychologist described by Subsection
  (a)(2)(A) must preferably have experience examining individuals
  with an intellectual disability. For purposes of this subsection,
  a physician or psychologist is considered to have experience
  examining individuals with an intellectual disability if the
  physician or psychologist has an established patient-provider
  relationship with the proposed ward. 
         SECTION 2.  Section 1202.152(a), Estates Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         (a)  Except as provided by Section 1202.1521, the [The] court
  may not grant an order completely restoring a ward's capacity or
  modifying a ward's guardianship under an application filed under
  Section 1202.051 unless the applicant presents to the court a
  written letter or certificate from a physician licensed in this
  state that is dated:
               (1)  not earlier than the 120th day before the date the
  application was filed; or
               (2)  after the date the application was filed but
  before the date of the hearing.
         SECTION 3.  Subchapter D, Chapter 1202, Estates Code, is
  amended by adding Section 1202.1521 to read as follows:
         Sec. 1202.1521.  LETTER OR CERTIFICATE:  REQUIREMENTS IF
  ALLEGED INCAPACITY BASED ON INTELLECTUAL DISABILITY. (a)  If an
  intellectual disability is the basis of a ward's alleged
  incapacity, instead of the letter or certificate required under
  Section 1202.152(a), the court shall, subject to Subsection (c),
  consider a written letter or certificate the applicant presents
  from:
               (1)  a physician licensed in this state; or
               (2)  a psychologist licensed in this state or certified
  by the Health and Human Services Commission to perform the
  examination, in accordance with rules adopted by the executive
  commissioner of the commission governing examinations of that kind.
         (b)  The letter or certificate must:
               (1)  state, in the physician's or psychologist's
  opinion, whether the ward has the capacity, or sufficient capacity
  with supports and services, to do any of the activities listed in
  Section 1202.152(b)(1);
               (2)  state how or in what manner the ward's ability to
  make or communicate reasonable decisions concerning himself or
  herself is affected by the ward's mental capacity;
               (3)  include any other information required by the
  court; and
               (4)  be dated within the period prescribed by Section
  1202.152(a)(1) or (2).
         (c)  The physician or psychologist who provides a letter or
  certificate under this section must preferably have experience
  examining individuals with an intellectual disability. For
  purposes of this subsection, a physician or psychologist is
  considered to have experience examining individuals with an
  intellectual disability if the physician or psychologist has an
  established patient-provider relationship with the ward.
         SECTION 4.  Section 1202.155, Estates Code, is amended to
  read as follows:
         Sec. 1202.155.  ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS FOR ORDER RESTORING
  WARD'S CAPACITY.  If the court finds that a ward is no longer an
  incapacitated person, the order completely restoring the ward's
  capacity must contain findings of fact and specify, in addition to
  the information required by Section 1202.154:
               (1)  that the ward is no longer an incapacitated
  person;
               (2)  that there is no further need for a guardianship of
  the person or estate of the ward;
               (3)  [if the ward's incapacity resulted from a mental
  condition, that the ward's mental capacity is completely restored;
               [(4)] that the guardian is required to:
                     (A)  immediately settle the guardianship in
  accordance with this title; and
                     (B)  deliver all of the remaining guardianship
  estate to the ward; and
               (4) [(5)]  that the clerk shall revoke letters of
  guardianship when the guardianship is finally settled and closed.
         SECTION 5.  The changes in law made by this Act apply only to
  an application for the appointment of a guardian, for the complete
  restoration of a ward's capacity, or for the modification of a
  guardianship, as applicable, that is filed on or after the
  effective date of this Act.  An application filed before the
  effective date of this Act is governed by the law in effect on the
  date the application was filed, and the former law is continued in
  effect for that purpose.
         SECTION 6.  This Act takes effect September 1, 2023.
 
 
 
 
 
  ______________________________ ______________________________
     President of the Senate Speaker of the House     
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1606 passed the Senate on
  April 25, 2023, by the following vote:  Yeas 30, Nays 0.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Secretary of the Senate    
 
         I hereby certify that S.B. No. 1606 passed the House on
  May 24, 2023, by the following vote:  Yeas 131, Nays 7, one
  present not voting.
 
 
  ______________________________
  Chief Clerk of the House   
 
 
 
  Approved:
 
  ______________________________ 
              Date
 
 
  ______________________________ 
            Governor