Hiding Assets in Divorce – is it Worth the Risk

Published November 14, 2012 | By

While attempting to hide assets in a divorce case is not commonplace, it happens more often than you might imagine.  As an attorney I would never advise a client to attempt to hide assets nor would I help them in their efforts to do so.  Aside from the legal and ethical issues, it is simple wrong and not something I am willing to do.

Hidden Assets Tend to be Found

I have had cases on both sides of the issue.  I have discovered assets that my client’s spouse was attempting to hide and I have discovered assets that my own client was attempting to hide.  When I explain to my client how easy it was for me to uncover the asset and how the other attorney is likely to find it just as easily, the client usually becomes much more reasonable about disclosing all assets. Continue reading →

Posted in Property Division

A Helpful Aid for Long-Distance Access: Skype Visitation

Published October 25, 2012 | By

When a couple has divorced and one or both of the parties has moved out of the area, it can make it can become extremely difficult and sometimes impossible for the non-custodial parent to have frequent access and communication with the children.  With the increasing mobility of our society and the much more typical career changes that seem to be a staple of our current economic times, this situation has become a very common occurrence.

Standard Possession Order Visitation Schedule – Long Distance Access

This situation is so common in fact that the Texas Standard Possession visitation schedule (the one that is included in some form in most court orders involving child possession and access) has provisions that address both when the parents live within 100 miles of each other and also when they live further than 100 miles apart. The over and under 100 mile schedules are fairly similar to each other in most respects, with a few key differences. Continue reading →

Posted in Parent-Child Issues

How to Deal with a House in a Divorce

Published October 19, 2012 | By

A common issue in most divorce cases, along with a long list of other issues that must be dealt with in a Texas divorce, is what to do with the marital residence.  If the parties rent their residence this is not a big issue, but in most divorce cases there will be owned real estate that must be dealt with.

Two Most Common Ways to Handle

While every case is different and there are many unique and unusual sets of circumstances, for most cases there are only two realistic divorce outcomes when it comes to the house. Continue reading →

Posted in Divorce, Property Division, Settlement | Taged , , , , ,

Texas Post-Divorce Alimony

Published October 15, 2012 | By

In this article I will explain the key points in Texas posts-divorce alimony. Please note that alimony is a particularly complicated area and you should consult with a qualified family law attorney about the specifics of your case if you believe you may be entitled to receive or possibly obligated to pay alimony. Also, this post addresses only post-divorce alimony, not temporary alimony.

Contractual Alimony or Spousal Maintenance under Texas Family Code Chapter 8

Texas divorce decrees frequently include provisions for periodic post-divorce payments from one spouse to the other, aside from the more common child-support payments. In general, these payments are based upon the needs of one spouse and the ability to pay of the other. Alimony agreements or orders generally come in one of two forms, either agreed contractual alimony or court ordered spousal maintenance under Texas Family Code Chapter 8. Continue reading →

Posted in Alimony, Divorce, Property Division, Settlement | Taged , , ,

What is a Financial Information Statement?

Published October 13, 2012 | By

A Financial Information Statement is a court-required document for nearly all temporary orders hearings and final trials in Texas divorce cases.  Here is a sample Financial Information Statement so you have an idea of what they look like.  The names and details used are all fictional, although the facts used are relatively typical of the issues dealt with in a Texas divorce. The sample document is based on a husband who expects to move out of the residence and pay child support.  In a real case both sides prepare and submit a Financial Information Statement to the court prior to a temporary orders hearing. Continue reading →

Posted in Alimony, Child Support, Divorce, Parent-Child Issues, Temporary Orders | Taged , , , , ,

My Thoughts on Top 10 Tips for Great Divorce

Published October 12, 2012 | By

I came across a thought-provoking article by Pamela Cytrynbaum on psychologytoday.com, entitled Top 10 Tips for a Great Divorce. It gives her suggestions on how to turn an amicable separation into an amicable divorce. I mostly agree with what she suggests, although I have different thoughts on a few of the issues. I encourage you to check out the article. Here are my thoughts on some of her tips that I took issue with: Continue reading →

Posted in Divorce, Parent-Child Issues, Settlement | Taged , ,

Visitation – What is the Texas Standard Possession Order?

Published October 11, 2012 | By

The Standard Possession Order (SPO) is a default visitation schedule defined by the Texas Family Code that is used in the vast majority of Texas divorce cases involving children. It is extremely detailed and lengthy and is one of the main reasons that divorce decrees in cases with children are usually 30 to 40 pages long. The Standard Possession Order statute is Texas Family Code Section 153.3101 through 153.317.

Every order has its own particular provisions, so please refer to the specifics of your own order for guidance if you have one. Also note that all of the terms are subject to alteration, either by negotiation or court order. This article is designed to give a brief overview of the statute and how its key provisions work Continue reading →

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Parent-Child Issues, Visitation | Taged , , , , , , ,

Austin Family Law Attorney Explains Written Discovery

Published October 6, 2012 | By

Not every case is a simple one and it is very common for lawyers to have to conduct and/or respond to written discovery requests.  Usually clients are confused by the process and what it involves so in this post I am going to lay out a basic explanation of the kinds of written discovery requests that typically get made in a Texas divorce case, the purpose of each,  and how difficult and time-consuming each is to respond to. While there are forms of discovery other than written discovery (the most common being the deposition), this post will discuss only written discovery. Continue reading →

Posted in Alimony, Divorce, Property Division, Separate Property | Taged , ,

What Effect Does Adultery Have on a Texas Divorce Case

Published October 3, 2012 | By

This post will discuss the legal and practical implications of extramarital affairs on a Texas divorce case.

Adultery is a Statutory Grounds for Divorce in Texas

The Texas Family Code has long held that adultery is a grounds for divorce. See Section 6.003 of the Texas Family Code. Its use as a grounds for divorce has become far less significant since Texas became a no-fault divorce state many years ago. Nonetheless, it is frequently pled as a grounds for divorce and a judge can find that the grounds for divorce was adultery, not the much more commonly used Continue reading →

Posted in Custody, Divorce, Parent-Child Issues, Property Division | Taged , , ,

Can Dad See the Kids if He’s Not Paying Child Support

Published September 28, 2012 | By

I sometimes get asked by a divorced mom whether she is required to let her ex-husband have his visitation with the children if he is not currently paying his child support.  The reasoning behind the question is that if he is not following the court order, then why should I?

Two Separate Issues Under the Texas Family Code

The answer is that yes, you must follow the court order and allow the father to exercise his visitation regardless of Continue reading →

Posted in Child Support, Enforcement, Parent-Child Issues | Taged , , ,