In Estate of Denial’s® ongoing experience of not being able to determine helpful information from The Official Website of Dallas County, we’re happy to report picking up at least one new piece of information on perhaps an upcoming proceeding related to 4949 Swiss Ave. defendant and disbarred attorney Edwin Carl Olsen.
Note that for Aug. 31, some type proceeding termed “ANNO” appears scheduled. EoD doesn’t know what that means and based on having been around that courtroom more than once at 8:30 a.m., the old “fool me once…fool me twice” adage applies. And rest assured – we won’t further bother the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office with inquiries for any clarification of this public information.
Background on our interest and inability to access Dallas County public information was highlighted in the following posts:
Meanwhile, it would seem we’re not the only ones commenting on Dallas County court operations. An EoD friend forwarded this blog post entitled Dallas Commissioners Continue to Fail Dallas Probate Courts earlier today:
A couple of years ago, we wrote about the Dallas County Commissioners’ Court’s failure to adequately fund the Dallas Probate Courts. We pointed out that some of these courts do not even have the ability to send a fax, make a long-distance phone call, or have a copier in the court offices when the Probate Courts in other counties have offices that are fully-equipped to function in the modern-era with copiers, fax machines, scanners, long-distance, etc.
Since that last blog post, not much has changed in Dallas County. The Commissioners’ Court continues to under-fund the Probate Courts. The most recent example of this problem came to light recently as we were working on a simple, uncontested guardianship where an adult son was trying to become his father’s guardian because of the father’s increasing alzheimer’s.
Under the Texas Government Code, every statutory Probate Court in the state is required, by law, to have a court investigator. The Court Investigator’s role is to go out and investigate each potential guardianship case and to make a recommendation to the Court as to whether it appears that there needs to be a guardianship created. The Court Investigator’s investigation and report is the very first step in a guardianship case, and until they have performed their duties, the case cannot proceed. Delaying the investigation often means delaying the ability to appoint someone to look out after the interests of an incapacitated elderly adult who cannot care for themselves any longer. The overwhelming majority of these cases deal with guardians for the elderly.
The post goes on to describe how two court investigators have quit in recent months and, due to a Dallas Commissioners Court-implemented hiring freeze, the probate courts have not replaced the positions. From this, three probate courts are sharing one investigator and creating significant delays in guardianship proceedings. Investigations which should normally take ten days or less, says the post of its firm’s experience, can now take four months.
Despite limited information likely creating limited courtroom observation opportunities, our interest in the 4949 Swiss Ave. case continues. We’ll keep you posted on what we know as well as available yet undecipherable public information.