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Recent Blog Posts

What Kind of Protective Orders Are Available to Victims of Domestic Violence in Texas?

 Posted on March 07, 2022 in Family Law

Collin County domestic violence lawyerDomestic violence is a serious matter and victims are offered protection under Texas law. While it can be difficult to take a stand against your abuser, Texas offers several protective orders that are intended to keep an abuser away from a victim, his or her children, or other family members.

Restraining orders are often mixed up with protective orders, and it is important to note that restraining orders only require one party not to contact the other. Protective orders, on the other hand, are more comprehensive and can require an abuser to stop engaging in abuse, threats, or stalking. Here is an overview of the protective orders available to Texans. If you or someone you love is suffering from domestic violence, consider getting the help of a Texas family law attorney right away. 

Order of Emergency Protection

Given in the most serious situations, a magistrate in a criminal court can approve an order of emergency protection when a victim of domestic violence, an arresting officer, a guardian, or a prosecutor requests it. Orders of emergency protection are issued after an alleged abuser commits sexual assault or other sexual abuse, human trafficking, indecent exposure, or stalking and has been arrested. 

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Can Using Marijuana Impact My Texas Custody Case?

 Posted on February 16, 2022 in Child Custody

Frisco child custody attorneyAs marijuana use becomes more acceptable all over the U.S., it has increasingly become legal for recreational purposes in many states around Texas. This has made marijuana easy and inexpensive to get, and many parents may use marijuana without thinking twice about potential consequences for a child custody case. 

Unfortunately for Texans who enjoy THC, recreational marijuana is still illegal. If you are getting divorced or are trying to get custody of your children, using marijuana - even when you are not around them - can negatively impact your case. 

Marijuana and Texas Family Courts

When Texas judges are making decisions about which parent will have conservatorship of or possession and access to a child, they will consider the child’s best interests first and foremost. If a parent is using marijuana illegally, this could easily reflect poorly on a court’s perception of that parent. Even if a parent is using medical marijuana, allegations that marijuana or any other substance is used unsafely or irresponsible could negatively impact a judge’s willingness to see a child spend significant time with that parent. 

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What Does a Guardian ad Litem Do in a Texas Custody Case?

 Posted on February 05, 2022 in Child Custody

Collin County child custody attorney Divorces with minor children and custody disputes in Texas can be emotionally charged and hard to resolve. Parents with the best intentions often find themselves locked in disagreement or vengefulness, and the best interests of a child may end up getting overlooked. 

In cases involving minor children, Texas courts may appoint a person called a “guardian ad litem.” While this may seem like a fancy Latin name, a guardian ad litem is simply a person who is in charge of finding out what would be in a child’s best interests. In this blog, we will discuss what a guardian ad litem is and what she does in a Texas divorce or custody dispute. 

What is a Guardian ad Litem? 

A guardian ad litem is an agent of a Texas family court. Her job is to act as a representative for a child and speak for the child’s interests when necessary. Guardians ad litem are often appointed in complex cases in which it may be difficult for a judge to determine a child’s best interests. Guardians ad litem are only involved during the court case and do not continue to represent a child forever. One parent or both parents may be ordered to pay for the cost of the guardian ad litem in their case. 

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How Is a QDRO Used in a Texas Divorce Settlement?

 Posted on January 31, 2022 in Divorce

shutterstock_556197010.jpgDuring the divorce process, a couple will need to divide multiple different types of marital property. In addition to physical property, spouses will also need to address ownership of financial accounts and other complex assets, including retirement accounts or pensions. When dividing retirement assets, spouses should use a qualified domestic relations order, or QDRO. Understanding the purpose of these types of orders and the benefits they provide will ensure that spouses can protect their financial interests during the divorce process and in the years to come.

Dividing Funds in Retirement Accounts

For employer-sponsored retirement accounts such as 401Ks, a person will have a certain amount deducted from their income before paying taxes. The money saved, which will grow through investments made by the plan holder, will usually remain in an account until a person reaches retirement age, and they will pay taxes when the funds are withdrawn. 

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Three Financial Mistakes to Avoid Making During a Divorce

 Posted on January 28, 2022 in Uncategorized

shutterstock_1069590962.jpgMany spouses considering divorce have concerns about the financial ramifications of the split. Divorce can be costly, and divorce expenses can grow even more if you make financial mistakes along the way. Knowledge is power, and thankfully, when you know what to look out for, you can minimize the amount of money you spend in the process of getting a divorce

Not Realizing That Marital Debt Becomes a Shared Responsibility 

Many couples carry the weight of debt together. In many cases, two partners will come to an understanding about who is responsible for what percentage of the marital debt. However, when spouses decide to get a divorce, casual agreements do not always apply in the eyes of the law. 

For instance, imagine that you and your partner verbally agreed that you are responsible for 20% of the debt and your spouse will take care of the 80% remaining. Unfortunately, this type of agreement is not enforceable by the court. If your spouse fails to hold up his or her end of the bargain, creditors may come after you for payment. Paying off debt before the divorce is finalized can help mitigate this financial stressor.  

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What Is Fraud on the Community in a Texas Divorce?

 Posted on December 30, 2021 in Divorce

denton asset division lawyerWhen a couple chooses to end their marriage and get a divorce, disputes related to property division can become complex and contentious. Spouses will be required to divide all of their marital assets and debts, and disagreements about how to do so can be difficult to resolve. However, matters can become even more complicated if one spouse is accused of hiding assets in an attempt to avoid sharing them with the other spouse. In Texas, this is known as “fraud on the community,” and a spouse who is accused of committing this form of fraud may face consequences.

Addressing Issues Related to Hidden Assets

Community property consists of all assets and debts that a couple acquired during their marriage. This property must be divided between the spouses in a manner that is fair, ensuring that each party will have the necessary financial resources going forward. However, there are a variety of ways that a spouse may attempt to conceal assets in hopes that they will not have to share them with the other spouse. Methods of doing so may include:

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How Can Paternity Be Established in Texas?

 Posted on December 06, 2021 in Family Law

frisco paternity lawyerEvery child has two biological parents. However, there are some situations where a person may not be recognized as a child’s legal parent, and in these cases, paternity may need to be established through the legal system. Doing so will protect the rights of the parent and the child. Both parents will be able to maintain a relationship with their child and be involved in raising them, and the child will have the right to receive child support to ensure that their needs will be met. Paternity can also provide other benefits, such as making sure a child has access to family medical history and giving a child the right to receive an inheritance from their parent or qualify for certain types of benefits, such as Social Security. Parents will want to understand the procedures that can be followed to legally establish paternity.

Acknowledgment of Paternity and Court-Ordered Paternity

It is usually unnecessary to establish paternity when parents are married, since a mother’s spouse is presumed to be a child’s legal parent. In addition, a person will be presumed to be a child’s parent if they were formerly married to the child’s mother, and the child was born within 300 days after the couple’s marriage ended, including through a divorce, annulment, or death. A presumption of paternity will also apply if a person lived in the same home as the child during the first two years after the child was born and told others that they were the child’s parent.

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Tips for Co-Parenting After Divorce

 Posted on November 29, 2021 in Child Custody

Frisco child custody lawyerWhen a couple with children goes through a divorce, in most cases, they still must have some kind of relationship with each other as they co-parent their children together. Some parents are able to develop a routine that works for their family with little or no conflict at all. Unfortunately, many other parents experience difficulties as they try to work through residual acrimony left over from the divorce that often spills over into their co-parenting relationship.

Having a solid parenting pan in place can help reduce these conflicts and make everyone’s lives – especially the children’s – so much less stressful. The following are some co-parenting tips that can also be helpful.

Promote Consistency

Although you and your ex-spouse are no longer married and parenting under the same roof, you both need to remain on the same page when it comes to how you deal with your children. Although not all rules will be the same at both parents’ homes, having consistency in bedtimes, activities, and allowed behaviors goes a long way in helping children adjust to their new life of having two homes and two routines.

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What Evidence is Needed for Texas Child Support Cases?

 Posted on November 12, 2021 in Child Support

Frisco child support lawyerWhile there are many issues that may lead to contentious discussions between divorcing spouses, one of those issues that can often lead to long-term acrimony is child support. It is not uncommon for the parent who is paying the support to resent the money they have to turn over every month to their ex-spouse. Conversely, it is also not uncommon for the parent who is receiving the support to feel the amount of child support they are receiving does not come close to meeting the actual financial needs of raising children.

Although Texas family courts use a formula to determine which parent should pay support and how much that support should be, it is still important to provide the court with any evidence that could have an impact in the amount of support obligation the court orders. The following is a brief overview of certain types of evidence that may be required. Your Frisco child support attorney can provide more details of the type of factors that could apply in your particular case.

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The Tragic Reality of Domestic Violence

 Posted on October 26, 2021 in Family Law

Frisco domestic violence attorneyOctober is designated as National Domestic Violence Awareness Month. The campaign was established in 1987 as a way to raise awareness about domestic violence issues. Despite more than three decades of work by countless organizations and advocates, domestic violence is still an underreported problem, occurring to millions of victims across the country from every walk of life and every socio-economic background.

Intimate Partner Violence

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) uses the term intimate partner violence (IPV) to describe physical, psychological, or sexual harm that is inflicted on a spouse or partner. National statistics show that about one in three women will experience IPV in their lifetimes. Although women are the majority of domestic violence victims, it is not just women who are abused. Men and women both experience it in hetero and same-sex marriages and partnerships. According to the National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCDAV), about 20 people per minute are victims of IPV every minute in the U.S. This comes out to more than 10 million women and men each year.

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