< McKinney Texas Family Law Blog | Puhl Law Group, PC

McKinney Texas Family Law Blog

What reasons may give cause for child support modification?

Divorce may have been one of the more difficult parts of your life that you have faced so far. Throughout the process, however, your child likely remained your top priority. As a result, you fought for the best child custody and support terms that you could reach during your legal proceedings.

Of course, you may know that the terms that suit your needs and your child's needs at a particular point in time may not always fit in the future. In particular, the financial circumstances of either parent could face changes that may have one considering whether a modification to child support terms may be warranted. Of course, in order for a modification to be legally binding, the court must approve it.

What to do when your ex is not meeting the terms of your divorce

Once the dissolution of marriage is completed, you'd think life would start to get a bit easier. A divorce settlement is in place and all you have to do is abide by its terms. Well, what happens if you do everything you can to live up to the terms but your ex does not? Is there anything you can do?

The short and simple answer here is, yes, you can. The state of Texas does offer enforcement options if your ex fails to pay child support or alimony, refuses to follow a custody arrangement or fails to divide assets according to the divorce settlement.

I'm getting a divorce. Is my inheritance protected?

An inheritance is a gift left to an individual after another person has died. The gift then becomes part of the heir's property, but if that person is married, is his or her spouse entitled to a share of the funds? For some, an inheritance can represent a large portion of personal wealth.

Inheritances are typically viewed as separate property. However, if you are considering a divorce and have received or will soon receive an inheritance, there are a few factors that go into determining whether the soon-to-be ex-spouse receives a share of the inheritance during a divorce. Determining the specific factors of whether and how an inheritance becomes shared property can be a challenge. Luckily, help is available.

What are my options for spousal maintenance?

At the end of a marriage, you and your spouse have the opportunity to decide on the details of the settlement. Of course, the two of you may have differing ideas on how to divide assets between the two of you and the amount of any support payments. Luckily, if the two of you can't agree, the state of Texas has laws to guide divorces in the state, and a judge can help you settle your differences in court.

One area often covered during a divorce is the concept of alimony or spousal support. If one spouse did not work, or made a significantly lesser income, he or she may receive support payments in the immediate aftermath of the divorce until he or she can gain more financial stability. This is especially true when the marriage was long, or one spouse was disproportionately responsible for the household maintenance. A spouse who was a high-earner with many assets may expect to discuss alimony during divorce proceedings.

Are there any drawbacks to drafting a prenuptial agreement?

Preparing to marry is an exciting time, but Texas couples would be wise to think beyond just the day of the wedding. There are many things that a couple can do to prepare for the future beyond the big day, and one of those things is to draft a prenuptial agreement.

Many people think that these types of legal contracts are only for the wealthy and the famous, but in reality, they can offer many practical benefits to people of all income levels. While there are many positive aspects to this step, it is helpful to consider exactly what you can accomplish with this type of legal contract and what you cannot do.

Mediation can help to take the tug of war out of divorce

You and your spouse realize that you cannot reconcile your differences. As a result, you decide to get divorced. However, the thought of playing tug of war with your soon-to-be ex is not exactly appealing. After all, getting a divorce is far from fun and games.

Fortunately, your divorce does not have to be an animosity-filled competition in Texas. Instead, you could work together to achieve a mutually beneficial result -- without further court intrusion. One route for pursuing this is divorce mediation, which offers numerous potential benefits. 

Protecting yourself from your future spouse's debt

You and your fiancé probably spend a lot of time doing fun things together. Perhaps you like to try new restaurants, go to concerts and even take romantic vacations together. You may also be planning an elaborate wedding that is sure to leave a dent in your budget.

One thing you may be noticing is that your beloved pays for many of these extravagances with a credit card. In fact, if you have seen the bill for these charges, you may also notice that your fiancé is not making much headway in paying it down. Now you may be wondering if that credit card debt is just the tip of the iceberg of the financial issues you may face when you are married. Is there any way to protect yourself from the risk?

How to 'do divorce' with kids

As a busy Texas parent, you likely spend a lot of time shuttling your kids to and from school events, sports activities and social engagements. In fact, perhaps you have described yourself like others in the past by saying you feel more like a personal chauffeur than a parent. Driving here or there (and everywhere!) seems to be par for the course of modern day family life. That's why when you told your children you were getting divorced, you worried how they'd handle the added stress.

Before you mentioned your plans, you determined in your mind to reach out for support from others who have trod the path before you to seek ideas as to how you might help your kids come to terms with the changes your divorce will affect in their lives. Sometimes, just talking to a friend who has been there is enough; however, if a more serious issue arises, such as a legal disagreement with your former spouse, it may be best to seek experienced guidance before things get out of hand.

A prenuptial agreement may be in your best interests

It is likely that you have witnessed people you know and love going through a divorce. Perhaps your own parents, friends or your business partner had to put life on hold while he or she sorted out property rights and divided assets. The lucky ones walked away with a satisfying settlement, but many probably spent months or years trying to rebuild their financial lives.

You don't want to go through that. In fact, you may have delayed marriage in the first place because of your fear of the messiness of a divorce. However, you may be interested to know that you can marry the love of your life and still protect yourself from much of the financial conflict of a potential divorce by drafting a prenuptial agreement.

Parenting Coordinator vs Parenting Facilitator. What is the Difference?

Have you experienced co-parenting conflicts and struggles due to poor communication during or after a divorce? If you have you might want to ask your family lawyer about utilizing a parenting coordinator or parenting facilitator. What is the difference in a parenting coordinator vs a parenting facilitator? When families are going through a difficult or contentious divorce sometimes a third party appointed by the court can help them settle their differences over parental arrangements. Sometimes the court will order the help of a parenting coordinator or parenting facilitator. The court would hold a hearing to decide if the case is high-conflict and in need of one, supported by good cause and the best interest of the child. In Texas, parenting coordinators and parenting facilitators are defined as, "An impartial third party appointed by the court, or by mediated agreement, to assist parents in resolving issues relating to parenting and other family issues arising from an order in a suit affecting the parent-child relationship." Parenting coordinators and facilitators are there to help resolve parenting conflicts. They cannot change a court order. But they can help parents come to a resolution on differences of opinions on raising their kids. For example, they can help parents work out hot-button issues like how much time the kids should be spending on homework. They could help the family come to an agreement on which extracurricular activities the kids should be involved in. And they could help parents agree on who are the approved caretakers of the child and who is not allowed to watch the child.

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