Monday, July 27, 2009

Family Guardianship Revoked

Three of Earnestine Starks' children sat down with News 8 after a visit to see their mother at a Fort Worth nursing home ended with three trespassing warnings. The staff ordered them to leave the property.

"You go from just trying to see your mother to you can never see your mother again."

Days later, another daughter, Sharon Richardson, found out she was no longer her mother's guardian.

"I don't know how a court can award guardianship in one week and then revoke it the next week."

Court documents show that a Tarrant County judge revoked Richardson's guardianship on July 8. According to a letter filed in court by the nursing home, Richardson made allegations of abuse against the facility.

She also wanted staff to re-evaluate her mother, who suffers from dementia and delusions, and move her from a secured to an unsecured unit.

Doctors disagreed with Richardson's request.

Richardson: "My mother did not want to go back to the facility; she said she would not go back in there and did not like the facility and did not like how she was being treated."

The courts appointed a new guardian for Earnestine Starks — Guardianship Services Inc., a non-profit agency that helps incapacitated individuals who do not have family members or friends who can serve as guardians.

Guardianship Services is now in charge of making all of Earnestine Starks' decisions — from medical to financial.

Colleen Colton, director of the agency: "We are guardian until somebody else becomes guardian or they die." She could not comment on the Starks case, but said families struggle with court guardianships because the state is always watching.

The courts have the right to step in if there's any sign of a dispute or allegation.

Full Article and Source:
Aging in America: Family struggles with guardianship issues

Colleen Colton/Guardianship Services, Inc. is registered with National Guardianship Association


Anonymous said...

Here we go --- Guardianship Services instead of family.

That was always the intent of the court.

And now Sharon Richardson will have to spend her energy just fighting to see her own mother - which will keep her busy while Guardianship Services and their lawyer bills, bills, bills.

wiser now said...

My heart goes out to Earnestine Starks and her family.

It breaks my heart to tell you, you have just entered the gates of hell on earth.

This clearly is retaliation from the nursing home and they got away with it. Why? because they can use the courts to their advantage to get rid of their problems most likely they are part of the "pay to play" gang in the probate club.

This is abuse and misuse of the guardianship racket.

I am sick knowing the horrid position the family is in. This ambush and kidnapping with court approval will change all of their lives forever.

I hope News 8 stays with this story like flies on fish guts because exposure is the only way to show who is benefitting from guardianship: the guardian.

Anonymous said...

this is unbelievable in the usa

Anonymous said...

This is an outrage. I hope all the viewers called into the TV station and gave their support for the Starks family!

helensniece said...

Dear Ms. Diaz,

Thank you, thank you, thank you, for exposing this racket for what it is. This family will be in litigation hell for years while the pirate guardian uses the wards money to fight the family in court.

This is a lawyers dream come true but they won't tell you the truth.

The attorney billing will be steep and could end up bankrupting the family who is fighting for their own Mother!

How dare they ambush another innocent person? This is an epidemic and you can make a difference by exposing the truth about guardianships, the role of the courts and who is in whose pocket because it's always about the money.

Please keep on this case. Your efforts will be worthwhile, more than you will ever know.

As the niece of a ward of the state, I am grateful for your interest in this guardianship issue that can snatch up a person and til death do they, the guardian and the ward, part.

Anonymous said...

Coleen Colton can resign. That she can do in favor of the Starks family.

Of course, the reality is she has no intention on doing that because there's money to be made here.

Guardianship Services will try to deflect the truth - that they won't let go. Not that they can't, but that they won't.

Anonymous said...

I hope this family files complaints with on all the attorneys and the judge who participated in revoking the guardianship from the family.

You can bet this was a dirty deal and probably accomplished unlawfully.

Anonymous said...

The practitioners on this case should all be thoroughly investigated.

If they did it to the Starks family, they've done it to others.

Anonymous said...

Colton could not comment -- but then she commented just enough to create innuendo?

Colton could comment and she did.

I am sick and tired of people trying to avoid the issue by saying they can't comment. The world knows different. You are transparent, Ms. Colton.

Anonymous said...

In our case, the nursing home's records did not represent reality, the truth.

The records are false; they are written in a manner to protect the nursing home from collusion with the guardian and the doctor with their decision to end a resident's life.

I was present with witnesses on the day our loved one died, emaciated and afraid. I know what I saw, I know what I felt, I wish I could forget.

I have the medical records which read like a bed time fairy tale
story leaving out the harsh, cruel details of the end, the pain and suffering of our loved one, a ward of the state, at the instructions of the guardian, leaving me with no standing, with no authority to comfort or to intervene or to stop the torture, the death, the murder of an innocent person by starvation and dehydration.

Anonymous said...

Colton tellsthe reporter that families struggle with court guardianships because the state is always watching.

What the heck is that? Is that a not so cleverly veiled suggestion that this family did wrong?

The court can't award guardianship in one week and then revoke it the next week without a hearing to remove the guardian for cause. Wait, I should add that the court can because that's what it did, but it did so unlawfully.

Who is the judge on this case?

Thank you News 8 for bringing this terrible wrong to public attention.

Please follow this family's struggle for justice in an injust system.

Anonymous said...

Richardson made allegations of abuse against the facility and the next thing she knows she's removed as guardian?

Was the judge drinking or drugging? Which was it?

That's a great message you sent, Judge -- that anyone who advocates for proper care for their loved one will be replaced.

Sharon Richardson should immediately be reinstated and the judge, the lawyers involved, and Guardianship Services should hang their collective heads in shame.

Anonymous said...

This is outrageous, it makes me sick. People should be picketing the nursing home, marching in the streets.

This is wrong and it must STOP. Public pressure is needed to shout out loud.

The courts are abusing and misusing their power keeping family apart for no reason. Shameful and a disgrace, makes me not proud to be living in the USA.

Applause to News 8 for airing this situation for the world to see. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Tarrant County judge, lawyers and all involved are incapable of feeling shame. They are addicted to power and control and love of money. How many other cases have ended this way? I say hey, where are the authorities? This case is fraudulent, baseless where are the feds to investigate COLLUSION?

This judge and others who engage in underhanded unethical wrongdoing should be dragged from his / her bench straight to the federal cage.

Anonymous said...

Colleen Colton is registered with the NGA?

Well that explains it all, doesn't it?

Anonymous said...

In my opinion, the National Guardianship Association is a smokescreen organization that realistically receives complaints about guardianships that go wrong, well, where oh where are the records of the complaints? Anyone thinking about asking for a report of what this outfit has in their possession?

IF the complaints were submitted without proof of receipt, we can presume the submissions found their way into the shredding machine.

VIP issue is how complaints are submitted to any agency, organization, law enforcement etc. Better have the proof, or the intended recipients can say "who?"

Anonymous said...

Guardianship is an industry. It is growing like weeds and spreading like mold as others find out just how profittable it is and how much money can be spread around to their pals rubberstamped by the court hidden from the court the IRS and related states. Better than winning the mega lotto cause winning the the lotto leaves tracks and footprints.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, News 8, for bringing this unjustice to public view.

I hope the outrage becomes a tidal wave!

Anonymous said...

Been there, done that. Never was able to help my mother after five years of trying.

Unknown said...

Sept. 7, 2009 and we are still without guardianship for our mother. Our request to meet with the judge,within 10 days of his decision was denied. Recently, we sat outside his courtroom and waited to see him, because we found out about a conference being held on our mother's case(another closed door meeting, where the family was not included.) We were promised by the attorney ad litem, that the judge would meet with us. After the attorney ad litem received answers from us about the small property my mother owns, he jumped up and swiftly walked away. He refused to stop and answer our questions or explain why the judge would not see us. After tearfully walking outside and around the corner to my car, I noticed the judge quickly walking down the street(with a police escort beside him.) We followed the guardianship manual and complained about abuse with our mother to an ombudsman and DADS against the nursing facility. We now have evidence that the nursing home representative faxed a retalitory complaint to the judge, and within one hour my guardianship award was revoked. How can a nursing facility hold that much power with a judge? Shouldn't the judge have called all parties involved in for questioning? The court document indicates,no one contested the new appointment, when the family was never made aware of the closed door hearing! We just want our mother back!
The Starks Family

Anonymous said...

Starks family,

It's not unheard of for judges to have investments in nursing facilites - and that may or may not be the case here.

Most likely, you're dealing with a "club" - the positions change, but rest assured, they're all out for the same thing - money.

Please consider joining NASGA. We have been where you are now and fully understand how it feels.

Anonymous said...

What good does it do to join NASGA? Nobody knows about you until its too late, and you really can't do anything for anyone can you? You need to make more noise, get noticed! Make an open facebook page, get out there on social networks and SCREAM!. JOIN UP WITH CPS, OR CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICE VICTIMS. Maybe if the people who are having their kids stolen from them now know they can also have their parents stolen from them in the future maybe something will start happening!