Effective Parenting After a Divorce
Parenting is a hard job under normal circumstances, but after a divorce it can seem impossible. Not only are you adjusting to a new situation, your children are going through a hard time as well. Everyone in the family will be on edge, wondering where things will go from here.Continue reading →
How to Effectively Co-Parent With Your Ex after a Divorce
The idea behind coparenting is that even though your marriage is over the parenting relationship you have with your ex continues. In over two decades of practice I have seen people who have handled this situation effectively, as well as those who have spent their children’s remaining childhood feuding with each other. Obviously, the latter situation should be avoided if at all possible. Here are my best tips on how to effectively manage that relationship. Continue reading →
What if the Child’s Birthday Falls on an SPO Holiday?
On one of my other posts I outline the basic terms of the Texas Standard Possession Order. One of my readers recently commented and asked a very interesting question that I have never been asked before. Here is the question: “What happens if a child’s birthday falls on a holiday schedule? Does the holiday schedule trump the birthday order (SPO of 6pm-8pm)?”
The relevant statute is Texas Family Code Section 153.314. That is the part of the Standard Possession Order that says certain “holiday” periods (defined by statute as Christmas, Thanksgiving, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, and the child’s birthday) trump any conflicting weekend or Thursday visitation. This is true regardless of whether the parents live more or less than 100 miles apart.
What that statute does not make entirely clear Continue reading →
Can a Child Age Twelve Decide Which Parent to Live With
I have been asked this question more times than I can count during my career. More often, it is stated to me as fact, as in “well my child is over twelve, so he/she gets to decide who he/she wants to live with.” This belief is based on a misinterpretation of a very real Texas Family Code statute concerning the wishes of a child twelve or older.
Here is what Texas Family Code Section 153.009 says Continue reading →
What is “Standard” Visitation Anyway?
Texas divorce lawyers frequently refer to the “SPO” which is short for the Texas Standard Possession Order. This statute defines a default visitation schedule that is presumed to be in the child’s best interest. While this presumption is rebuttable under certain circumstances, my guess is that the Standard Possession Order (or some slightly modified version of it) is the visitation schedule in 90% or more of the divorce cases in Texas.
The statutory schedule is very long and detailed. You can view the actual statute here. In this article I will highlight Continue reading →
How to Break the News of Divorce to Your Kids
For most people getting divorced is a gut-wrenchingly painful process. For those with children, it can be even more painful as you witness the negative impact that the separation, divorce and many other divorce-related changes have on your children. As a divorce lawyer for over 20 years I have seen many clients struggle with this issue. As a divorced parent myself I can attest that this was one of the most difficult parts of the process.
One of the most significant events of the divorce process is the beginning – specifically, Continue reading →
Should You Hire a Family Law Attorney or Use an Online Divorce Form Website?
When should you hire a family law attorney and when is it okay to use an online divorce form website to save a little money? This article will provide a few pointers to help you decide whether to do it yourself or retain an attorney.
What Does it Mean to Use an Online Divorce Form Website?
Essentially, using an online form website in your family law case means that you will represent yourself – you are acting as your own attorney. All of the online divorce form sites have disclaimers making it clear that they are not your attorney and that they are just preparing documents on your behalf. While it is your constitutional right to act as your own attorney, there are some significant risks involved that should be evaluated before Continue reading →