Child issues

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When should I try to get child support enforcement in Texas? Fort Worth child support lawyers

Unpaid child support is a significant problem in Texas. At the end of 2013 Texas had over $13 billion in child support arrears unpaid. That is a significant sum of money unpaid in support of Texas children. Many parents who should receive child support do not receive the child support obtained through a divorce or custody proceeding. After years of non-payment of child support plus interest the number can be substantial. Other federal government suggests approximately half of parents owing child support arrearage owes more than $30,000. Unfortunately, many parents do not take the necessary steps to enforce the child support obligation...

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10 Issues That Will Make Your Texas Divorce More Expensive

Divorce attorneys like myself help clients with divorces and post-divorce actions like enforcement, contempt and modification primarily in the Dallas and Fort Worth / North Texas area. In such a large metropolitan area my clients range in family size, financial assets, post-divorce needs, property ownership and other issues related to their divorce. These divorces can range for very reasonable for clients, particularly with uncontested divorces, all the way to quite expensive for complex and hotly contested divorces. The cost factor for a client is always a relevant issue. Some divorces are expensive because there is a lot of work with custody,...

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My spouse doesn’t want a Texas divorce but I do. What can I do? Bedford divorce lawyer explains

This is a fairly common question I receive at my Bedford, Texas law office from potential divorcees who feel trapped by their spouse because the spouse is adamant about remaining in the marriage for one reason or the other. At fault divorces in Tarrant County, Texas Once upon a time in Texas a divorce could only occur for very specific reasons. The spouse pursuing divorce had to allege and prove one or more of these reasons to obtain a divorce. If the party could not prove the alleged reason for divorce then the marriage remained. This approach to Texas divorce continues to exist...

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How to prepare for family court in Tarrant County, Texas

The majority of my family law practice is in Tarrant County where I assist clients with divorces, child custody, child support, modifications and enforcements. I spend a lot of time in the Tarrant County Family Courts and that gives me opportunities to see how a lot of people appear and behave in the courthouse and courtrooms. Although the family court judges in Tarrant County are generally fair-minded, there is a lot of information they can glean from you and your claims based upon your appearance and behavior. The last thing you want is to spend money on court costs and...

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The importance of a well constructed 50/50 custody arrangement in a divorce in Texas

Many people exit a divorce with children with the desire to balance the custody relationship so the parents split time with the children in a 50/50 custody arrangement. I have written several times about the risks involved in 50/50 child custody arrangements. As great as they are when they work, they are terrible for everybody when they go wrong. The risks are so great that many Texas family judges are hesitant to approve 50/50 custody in a divorce. The reason for the refusal is that the judge believes the standard possession order (the typical 1-3-5 weekend schedule) is a good default...

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Creative Custody and Possession Schedules in a Fort Worth Divorce

A few months ago I wrote a post about problems with 50/50 custody arrangements. Generally, the problems I discussed are relevant to any kind of custom or creative custody arrangement deviating from the standard possession order or extended standard possession order schedule found in the Texas Family Code. 50/50 custody arrangements are not the only type of non-standard custody arrangements in a Texas divorce. You can create almost any kind of custody arrangement that you like. Some custody arrangements are extremely unusual but work for the family. Your unique schedule may do as little as tweak the times in the standard possession...

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The Texas sized myth of terminating rights to avoid child support

In a recent post I discussed why parents sometimes want to terminate the parental rights of another parent in Bedford, Fort Worth, or Dallas and why that is often not a financially advantageous move. Today's post takes the other side: whether a parent can terminate his or her own rights to avoid child support. I'll tell you up front that the answer is almost always no. Like 99.99999999999999999999999999% of the time no. You don't have to take my word for it; but as a Fort Worth divorce lawyer I have seen more of these situations than most people. Are a parent contemplating...

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The Hidden Danger of Child Support Income Withholding in Texas

In Tarrant County divorces with children, child support is almost always awarded. Along with the support comes an income withholding order (IWO) to garnish child support from the paying parent's paycheck. The paying parent, the obligor, will have payments deducted and paid through the Attorney General or a domestic relations office. The income withholding order is often a good deal. It helps ensure child support goes to the receiving parent, the obligee, and avoids the obligor having to prove payments went to the obligee. There is a hidden trap when obligors are least capable of freeing themselves from a child support enforcement.  This post could potentially...

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Terminating a parent’s rights in Texas: The Financial Risks

One question I receive at my Bedford law office is how to terminate parental rights when a parent refuses involvement in a child's life. The typical scenario is that after a divorce or a suit affecting the parent-child relationship (SAPCR) that established some visitation rights and child support obligations, the parent with visitation rights shortly after stopped involvement in the child's life so the parent with custody of the child wants to terminate the other parent's rights. Sometimes the parent has reasonable reasons for wanting to pursue this course of action, such as ensuring the uninvolved parent does not end up with custody. I'm not...

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Divorce agreements and duress in a Bedford, Texas divorce with Bedford divorce lawyer Adam Kielich

Around the interwebs, I see a lot of people in the midst of divorce, or after the divorce has been granted by a Texas court, that they signed a divorce agreement, mediated settlement agreement, or divorce decree but that they signed it "under duress", "under pressure", or they were "forced to sign it." These statements typically come along with a question about whether the agreement or divorce decree can be overturned or set aside by a Texas divorce court. The answer is typically no but let's explain why. If you expect to divorce your spouse in the near future then...

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