In life we get many surprises, some are nice and others are not so nice. Even nice surprises may not come in a way that makes us very happy. Finding out that you are a father may be one of those times. If you are approached by someone with whom you had relations and they tell you that you are the father of their child, what are your rights?
In Texas when a child is born out of wedlock, the child has no legal father. This is the difference between a biological father and a legal father. A man cannot be ordered to pay child support or have visitation rights to the child. For a man to be found to be a legal father, an Acknowledgement of Paternity form must be signed or through paternity DNA testing.
Do not sign an Acknowledgement of unless you’re positive that you are the father. Acknowledging paternity create make you responsible for the child even if you end the relationship with the mother. You may seek visitation rights, custody (joint or sole) and may have to pay child support.
Never ignore notices from a court. If you do, the court may proceed without you and make a determination in absentia. Always contact an attorney to assist you through this process.
If you have any questions as to paternity or your parental rights contact the Morris Law Firm at (214)357-1782, (817)496-3447 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Marriage is one of the most important decisions that we make in our life. Most people take time to get to know the person before they get married.
Divorce is usually the same. People do not wake up one morning and decide that they no longer want to be with the person they were in love with the day before. Many couples will split up for a time to see if they can work through their problems. Life moves on, and the separation may never have become final.
What do you do when trying to get a divorce and you don’t know how to contact your spouse? As in most civil cases, you must serve a citation on the other party. If you cannot find your spouse, he/she may be served citation by publication.
To qualify for service through publication, you must first file your original petition for divorce with the court, make a diligent effort to serve the citation on your spouse and then receive permission from the court to do alternative service. You must run the add in the newspaper, name the person to be served and add specific information as the what the lawsuit involves, which county, court, how long they have to answer, that the party can hire an attorney and information on whether the suit involves minor children.
If you are having problems in obtaining a divorce or any family law legal matter, contact the Dallas office of the Morris Law Firm at (214)357-1782 or via email at email@example.com.
One of the first questions we get from a parent is “how much will have to pay in child support?” In Texas, child support is controlled by statute. The court may order one or both parents to provide child support for a child until till the child reaches 18 years old, or until the child graduates from high school (whichever occurs later). You cannot avoid paying child support even if you are denied access to your child.
In Texas, child support is calculated on the obligor’s net resources. If the obligor’s monthly net resources are less than $7,500 the percentage is 20% for one child, 25% for two, 30% for three, 35% for four, 40% for five and at least 40% for six or more children. If the net resources are greater than $7,500, the amount above 7,500 will be calculated by the court. In addition to the payment of net resources, the obligor will be responsible for the child’s health insurance or payments to the person providing the health insurance.
The factors that reduce or increase child support are complicated. Start dates and suspension of child support can vary from case to case. Do not attempt to handle child support without legal representation. Call the Morris Law Firm’s Dallas office at (214)357-1782 or reach us via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Love is a beautiful thing. Many times love leads to marriage. Unfortunately in today’s society, too many marriages end in divorce. When a marriage breaks up, it not only affects the couple, it puts a strain of their family and friends. Additionally, it will be extremely difficult on any children of the marriage.
A divorce will be one of the most difficult times of each of your lives. You clearly loved each other enough to be married. The divorce can either throw salt on each of your wounds, or it can begin the healing process. There is an old joke about a divorce She says “I want the dog”, he responds “You hated the dog”, she replies “Yes. But, you love him.”
The more civil the two people can be, the easier the divorce and your continued encounters will be. It will make it easier if you:
- Communicate. Just because you may not agree with your soon to be ex-spouse, you need to listen and communicate.
- Try and look at how the procedure is affecting your soon to be ex-spouse. If you appear to be concerned, there is a better chance that they will be open to what you want.
- When dividing the property, be realistic on how it is divided. Know that each of you will have to give up things.
- Avoid using your children as a weapon. Your children did not choose the divorce. Do not convey messages to each other through your children. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER complain about your ex-spouse around your children.
- Remember that your ex-spouse is human. We all make mistakes. Don’t continue to remind them of their mistakes or their short comings.
- Get a strong root in faith. Seek out God and try to have your children in a church home.
- As your ex-spouse moves on, don’t criticize their new romantic interest.
- Most of all use common sense. If you don’t want them treating you in a certain way give them the same courtesy.
If you follow these simple rules, it will not only make the divorce easier, it will prevent a lot of unnecessary attorney’s fees. It is not a guarantee that the other side will treat you the same way. However, the judge and jury both will make opinions of you on how you act in court.
If you have any questions about divorce or any family law issue, call the Morris Law Firm’s Dallas office at (214)357-1782 or contact us through email at email@example.com.
In Texas parents have the duty to support their children, including providing them with clothing, food, shelter, medical and dental care, and education.
The duty of a parent to support his or her child exists while the child is an unemancipated minor and continues as long as the child is fully enrolled in an accredited secondary school in a program leading toward a high school diploma until the end of the school year in which the child graduates.
A parent who fails to discharge the duty of support is liable to a person who provides necessaries to those to whom support is owed.
If you have any questions about a family law issue, do not hesitate to contact the Morris Law Firm at (214)357-1782 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The parent of a child has the following rights and duties:
1) the right to have physical possession, to direct the moral and religious training, and to designate the residence of the child;
2) the duty of care, control, protection, and reasonable discipline of the child;
3) except as provided by Section 264.0111, the right to the services and earnings of the child;
4) the right to consent to the child’s marriage, enlistment in the armed forces of the United States, medical and dental care, and psychiatric, psychological, and surgical treatment;
5) the right to represent the child in legal action and to make other decisions of substantial legal significance concerning the child;
6) the right to receive and give receipt for payments for the support of the child and to hold or disburse funds for the benefit of the child;
7) the right to inherit from and through the child;
8) the right to make decisions concerning the child’s education; and
9) any other right or duty existing between a parent and child by virtue of law.
If you have questions about your parent child relationship or any family law matter, call the Morris Law Firm at (214)357-1782 or email us at email@example.com.
The Texas Family Code provides in §204.1:
(a) In a judicial, administrative, or other proceeding, the marriage of a man and woman may be proved by evidence that:
1) a declaration of their marriage has been signed as provided by this subchapter; or
2) The man and woman agreed to be married and after the agreement they lived together in this state as husband and wife and there represented to others that they were married.
(b) If a proceeding in which a marriage is to be proved as provided by Subsection (a)(2) is not commenced before the second anniversary of the date on which the parties separated and ceased living together, it is rebuttably presumed that the parties did not enter into an agreement to be married.
Texas is one of Twelve states that allow “Common Law Marriages”. In Texas the relationship is referred to as an informal marriage. All other states in the U.S. acknowledge and accept informal marriages from other states.
To dissolve an informal or common law marriage, the parties must go through a divorce like with other marriages. However, if two years has passed since the separation of the parties, there is a rebuttable presumption that the marriage did not take place.
If you have questions about a family law issue, contact the Dallas office of the Morris Law Firm at (214)357-1782 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Temporary Restraining Orders (TRO) Are common in family law cases. TROs can be used to establish and maintain the status quo of the between the parties or to provide an example on how the court expects the parties to react to each other.
TROs can set out the terms of possession for the children, how child support will be paid and who will temporarily pay the monthly bills. TROs can keep the parties from wasting or hiding marital assets by putting restrictions on the use of property. TROs may deal with even how the parties are allowed to talk about each other around other people (especially the children).
TROs are only good for 14 days unless extended by the court for a good reason. One reason a TRO can be extended past the initial 14-day period is if the respondent has not been served before the 14 days has elapsed. Or, the TRO can be extended through agreement of the parties. Most often, a court will set the hearing on the TRO inside the 14-day period. At the hearing, the court will decide whether the TRO becomes a temporary order that will last until the case is final.
If the parties can agree to temporary orders, it makes the case easier and most cost efficient. When this happens, it is usually the result of negotiations either between the lawyers and the parties or as a result of mediation. If the parties cannot agree to temporary orders either through informal negotiations or through mediation, discovery can be sent between the parties, and the court will hold a hearing at which testimony and evidence are taken. The court will determine the boundaries of the temporary order. This can add a lot of expense to the case.
Family Law Blog Coming Soon!