Divorce is a challenging area of practice for any Attorney. While it is usually a painful and stressful process for the client it is also a time for positive changes.
Our Attorneys realize that their job is not only to take care of the “legal” side of the clients issues such as pleadings, hearings and transfer of property, we also take the emotional side of the process. It is important to us that we consider your priorities such as your relationship with your children, making sure that your credit is protected and protecting the property you feel is important.
The law states that your property must be divided in a manner that is just and right. However, we recognize that the value of the property to be divided is only part of the equation. It may be much more important to you to keep the home and all the equity than other, equally valuable portions of` your estate.
Our firm makes it a priority to consider the clients’ particular interests and keep in mind their special facts and circumstances.
Child custody cases are the most emotional and important cases to our clients. Your children are your life, your heart and soul. WE GET THAT! Our families are our highest priority. Most of us are parents and our walls are covered with our kid’s photos. We have sat on the bleachers while our kids swung the bat or caught the football, acted in the school play or danced in the recital. We know how important you time with your children is.
When you come to us because custody has been challenged, you do not have to explain how crucial it is to you. Most cases have the potential for working out and finding a resolution which is best for the children and both parents. In the instances in which it must go to trial, we will be there for you.
Modification of Custody, Support, or Other Terms
A “Modification” is where the previous order, Divorce or Parentage is not working out. Child support often must be raised or decreased because the income of the parent who is paying has changed.
Sometimes visitation is not working out. Sometimes there is a geographical restriction in the prior order that needs to be lifted so that you can move for your job. Or, because of a change in circumstance, custody needs to be modified. Until your child is 18 years of age and has graduated from highschool, your order can be modified.
Paternity and Parentage
A paternity or parentage case is what is filed when the parents of the child or children are not married. Under Texas Law, children born under these circumstances have exactly the same rights as all other children and the parents can have the same rights as if they were married at the time of the birth. When the parents are married, paternity is presumed; however, if the parents aren’t married, the biological father can get orders establishing him as the legal father. In those circumstances, you may have to have a “Parentage Order” to spell out your rights, duties, and responsibilities.
Most Family Law Attorneys agree that the most rewarding area of practice is when we help families adopt a child. Helping parents who have been unable to conceive has been one of our greatest sources of satisfaction in what we do for our community. We respect the ultimate sacrifice and the gift of unselfishness that birth parents make for their baby. We realize how grateful adoptive parents feel when they can finally complete their family.
Very commonly, we help facilitate Step-Parent adoptions. It is gratifying to help a young man, who has been acting in every way as a father–feeding, housing, nurturing, loving a child–become the legal father.
Due to some of the destructive addictions with young adults in today’s society, many children are being raised by their grandparents. There are special provisions in the Texas Family Code that make it more affordable and less restrictive for grandparents to adopt their grandchildren.
Pre-Marital and Post-Marital Agreements
Texas Legislature has recognized the desires of its citizens to protect and keep separate their property. Our firm keeps abreast of the changes in the law to best protect our clients and their property.
In Texas, Grandparents have statutory rights in certain circumstances. We more than appreciate the bond that grandparents have to their precious grandchildren. It can even be more challenging when you have to take a position that is adverse to your own adult child. There are several potential remedies available under the law which allows you to protect your grandchildren.
While our children may be our angels, they don’t necessarily always act that way. If your child does get charged with an offense, you will want to ensure that their rights are protected as they move through the juvenile justice system. Court and the law can be confusing for an adult and can be even more so to a child or teenager.
For most families, having a will is a crucial part of protecting their family along with having health insurance, life insurance and wearing seat-belts. Our clients are amazed at the peace of mind you get knowing that your estate, whether it is just a family home and some life insurance or a sizeable estate including a business, substantial funds and real estate holdings goes to the loved ones you want to have them.
Today’s families come in all shapes and sizes. More common than not we have a “yours, mine and ours” situations. A Will is a very important tool to make sure that the particular family members inherit according to your desires.
The very most important thing that can be secured with a Will is the Guardianship of your minor children in the event of the untimely death of both parents. With a will, you can not only designate who raises your children, but also who controls and manages the funds you have left for them to do so.
When a family member passes, the process where the assets under the Will are distributed is called “Probate.” Texas law provides many avenues to affordably probate a Will. When dealing with our Probate clients, we are careful to keep in mind that they are not just dealing with the legal issues of asset distribution, but also the recent death of a loved one.
An “Heirship Proceeding” is necessary when an individual dies without a Will. If there are minimal assets (such as just a home), there is an avenue under Texas Law to do this quickly and affordably.
The challenge come when there are minor children and/or substantial assets. If you are faced with an Heirship situation, we understand the hassle and confusion that comes with taking care of all the financial issues as well as the emotional side of what is usually the unexpected loss and untimely death of a family member.
Our firm offers Estate Planning as one of the tools smart people consider a necessary part of maturing and heading toward retirement. We review every client’s situation carefully. Some estates need simple documentation to protect you and your family with others take more extensive trusts and creativity to get the results you want.
Power of Attorney
There are many “Power of Attorney’s” provided for under Texas Law. They can be broad, and cover all your assets immediately, as when you have to be away from the country or when a loved one is in need of complete control due to age and health issues. There are limited Powers of Attorney which may mean a short duration or in the event of incapacity. Each client has their own special need in this area.
One of the most common Guardianships is when an elderly loved one is unable to take care of themself. Also, Guardianships come into play for disabled adults and minor children who have lost their parents.
This is a delicate area of the law. Quite often the emotions run high in considering how best to handle what once was a vibrant self-sufficient adult now dependent on others to make life decisions for them.