Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses Counseling

October 22nd, 2017

Divorce clients often wonder whether they need counseling. If they have kids, they are also likely to wonder whether their children need therapy. If you’re asking one or both of these questions, that’s good because looking after your mental health and the mental health of your children is essential to your overall well-being.

In this article, we’re not talking about marriage counseling. If you’re thinking about divorce and you’re curious about marriage counseling, visit our page next month for an article about “discernment counseling”, a process that can help couples decide whether to pursue marriage counseling. This article is about determining whether to seek individual therapy for yourself and your children.

Adults who are going through divorce need emotional support. Counseling is one available form of emotional support. Only you can decide whether it is right for you. The intense emotions that divorce brings about can take you by surprise, even if you expected to face emotional challenges. Think about what works for you when you need to make big decisions or find solutions to problems in your daily life. Do you have a friend or family member who listens well and talks with you in a way that is helpful and uplifting? Conversations with people like that can be helpful and healing. Some people that you talk to may have even been through a divorce themselves, which can help you feel heard, understood, supported and accepted. If you are a person of faith, your congregational leader may be a trustworthy source of support. Sometimes, a professional counselor is the best emotional support, especially if you are wrestling with depression, anxiety, or substance use. Ask people for references or call around to see who might be a good fit for you. Finding the right emotional support makes a huge difference in your ability to recover from your divorce and move forward with your life.

Sometimes, kids whose parents are divorcing benefit from therapy. Every child’s needs are unique, so it is good to evaluate whether counseling could benefit your child. That said, it is imperative that you understand how important of a role you, the parent, play in meeting your child’s mental health needs. Children who receive consistent emotional support from parents during and after divorce often come through the experience having acquired good coping and problem-solving skills and increased resiliency. Support your kids by keeping discussions about your divorce away from their eyes and ears, maintaining consistency in their daily routines as much as possible, and not only refraining from negative talk about their other parent but also encouraging a healthy and positive relationship with them. Even children of the most supportive and encouraging parents might need help processing the emotions that go along with divorce. Kids do not often recognize on their own that they need emotional support, but parents can look for signs that their kids need help. If you see changes in your child’s behavior or personality such as increased anger, aggression, acting out more or differently than usual, or appearing depressed and isolating themselves from things they usually enjoy, then counseling might benefit your child. Talk with other parents or your child’s health care providers to get some ideas about who you might approach about counseling for your child.

If you have questions about your Texas divorce, call (903) 753-7499 today to schedule a consultation with Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra. You can also visit our web page anytime to submit an online contact form.

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Reminds Drivers to Watch Out for No Refusal Periods

October 2nd, 2017

Austin police report that their ‘No Refusal’ DWI enforcement program is helping them obtain better evidence and make stronger cases against drunk and drugged drivers. Despite that apparent success, there are no numerical data available to tell us whether fewer people are driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol and whether there has been a decrease in the amount of fatal drug or alcohol-related crashes as the result of the no-refusal program.

You might not be aware that the overall number of DWI arrests in Austin has not increased since the no-refusal program got implemented. The Austin Police Department arrest between five and a half thousand and six thousand drivers each year on suspicion of DWI and the number remains consistent even as the no-refusal program continues to expand into time periods that do not happen near holidays.

Whether the no-refusal program is effective in preventing impaired driving or not, it is still something that drivers should be aware of.  In previous years, Halloween has been a time when police in Austin and elsewhere in the state have conducted no-refusal periods. Although Halloween falls on a Tuesday this year, there are always plenty of parties during the weekend before the holiday. Law enforcement officials know that this is sure to be a fun-filled weekend for both children and adults, and in selected areas, they may even be conducting a no-refusal period during that time.

Whether or not your plans for Halloween take you to an area where no-refusal will be in effect, be aware that law enforcement officers will be working to keep drunk and drugged drivers off the streets by increasing their patrols. A bigger law enforcement presence on the streets means that you are at a higher risk of being pulled over than you usually are.

If your plans this weekend take you to an area where no-refusal is in effect, know that law enforcement officers will arrest any driver who refuses to submit to roadside blood or breath testing. After the arrest, a blood sample will be taken from them while they are in police custody.

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – A Powerful Ally Against Texas DWI Charges

If you get stopped by the police, you might be able to prevent your traffic stop from turning into a DWI investigation. Remain calm, speak respectfully, and give the police officer only as much information as the law requires. If you do get arrested, protect yourself by using your right to remain silent. Ask to speak with an attorney right away. An experienced Texas DWI defense attorney can build a strong case on your behalf, especially if you retain them immediately. If you get charged with DWI because you are suspected of driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, contact an experienced Texas DWI Defense Attorney today. If you have any questions about DWI in Texas, call Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499, or contact us on our website through our online contact form.

 

Texas Family Law Attorney Talks About Premarital Agreements

September 22nd, 2017

Did you know that years ago, couples who planned to marry in Texas could not make premarital agreements? Premarital agreements are becoming more and more commonplace among modern couples, so it can be hard to believe that there was ever a time where couples could not enter into them. The Texas Constitution prohibited all couples, both those who were married and those who were anticipating marriage, from making any agreement that would change the character of their marital property.

Married couples were the first to be permitted to make agreements regarding their marital (community) property. In 1948, the Texas Constitution got amended to permit spouses to contract with each other to designate some or all of their community property as separate property via a document called a marital agreement. Couples who were not yet married could not contract with each other regarding marital property until 1980. Since 1980, the process for contracting with a future spouse regarding ownership of property has evolved into a strict set of requirements that are set out in the Texas Family Code and the Texas Constitution.

If you plan to marry in Texas, you may create a premarital agreement. As with anything else, the key to knowing whether something will benefit you is understanding more about it. For example, a couple who is anticipating marriage would want to know why some couples choose to have them to determine for themselves whether they need one.

Premarital agreements can serve a few different purposes, including limiting future alimony, preserving family assets, ensuring specific parenting practices, clarifying tax obligations, and setting forth the parties’ rights and duties during the marriage, among other things. While there seem to be few boundaries on what you can put in a premarital agreement, please know that there are some limitations. You and your future spouse may not contract to do things that violate any criminal laws or that go against established public policy.

It might also be useful for you and your future spouse to understand who typically enters into premarital agreements. There is no one specific class or category of people who enter into premarital agreements more often than others. With this in mind, couples who are considering marriage must understand that premarital agreements are only a good idea if both parties want one. A premarital agreement is a legally binding document, so no one should ever enter into one under any circumstance besides wanting to have one because they believe that it will benefit them and their future spouse. For example, if you’re considering it just because your future spouse wants it, because your parents want the two of you to have one, or because their parents want you to get one and you either don’t want one or do not see that it will benefit you, do not enter into the agreement. If you and your future spouse agree that you want to enter into a premarital agreement because it will be good for each of you, then it’s time to work with a Texas Family Law Attorney to explore what you plan to include in your premarital agreement.

If you have questions about your Texas divorce, call (903) 753-7499 today to schedule an initial consultation with Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra. Alternatively, you can visit our web page anytime to submit an online contact form.

 

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Talks About What Defense Attorneys Do

September 2nd, 2017

Did you get caught up in a DWI arrest this past weekend in Austin? If so, it’s time for you to learn more about what a Texas DWI Defense Attorney can do for you. The police in the Austin area have expanded their No Refusal DWI initiative, which means that more and more drivers are being stopped, investigated, and sometimes even arrested for DWI. If you are one of those drivers, there is a lot at stake, but there is also something that you can do to give yourself a chance at the best possible outcome in your Texas DWI case.

The “no refusal” initiative allows police to forcefully draw blood from drivers who refuse to voluntarily participate in blood or breath testing by obtaining bench warrants from on-duty magistrate judges. In many areas in Texas, “no refusal” periods take place on a few selected holiday weekends each year. The Austin Police Department declared an every weekend No Refusal DWI initiative starting January 6, 2017, through September 2017, from 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. every Friday and Saturday night through Sunday morning.

Any driver who gets arrested for DWI can benefit from the services of a Texas DWI defense attorney. Your DWI defense attorney can help you understand the charges that you are facing. They can also tell you how a conviction could affect various areas of your life. When you make an appointment to talk with a DWI defense attorney, they will want you to tell them about your DWI arrest.  When an attorney asks you to tell them about your arrest, they are listening for specific details about your arrest that can help them formulate a plan for your defense, should you decide to have them represent you.

It’s possible that your income will qualify you for the services of a public defender. However, it is important that you understand the difference between retaining private counsel for your DWI case and working with one of the state’s public defenders. A public defender is an attorney who is employed by the state.  In contrast, private counsel is an attorney that you select and pay for on your own. All attorneys are licensed professionals and each attorney advocates on behalf of their clients. The main distinction between a public defender and a private attorney is that in Texas, public defenders don’t take part in the administrative license suspension (ALR) process. Any driver who gets charged with DWI must request an ALR hearing to avoid license suspension. Only private counsel may handle those requests and the ALR hearings.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Standing Up for Texas Defendants

The penalties for DWI can have far-reaching effects on many areas of your life. From transportation to your job to being able to provide transportation to others in your family, qualifying for public benefits, applying for jobs, and finding a place to live, a DWI can require a lot of adjustments to your daily life. Fortunately, a Texas DWI defense attorney can give you the best chance of obtaining a result in your DWI case that will intrude upon your life as little as is possible under your unique circumstances. To learn more about Texas DWI defense, call Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499. You can also connect with us through our online contact form.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Talks About Human Trafficking

August 31st, 2017

The idea that people are being transported illegally into the United States for financial gain is something that stirs compassion in many people’s hearts. People want to come to America so badly that they endure dangerous traveling arrangements and risk falling prey to false promises of what they will have when they get here. Human trafficking also stirs up strong feelings against the people who exploit people that want to come to America, individuals who treat immigrants like things instead of people, and who subject them to danger and abuse. As if human trafficking isn’t bad enough on its own, sometimes immigrants die while they are being transported into the United States.

Recently, ten people died in a tractor trailer that was transporting people into the United States from Mexico illegally. The driver of the truck is charged with illegally transporting immigrants for financial gain resulting in death,  the possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, illegally transporting immigrants resulting in serious bodily injury, and conspiracy to transport immigrants illegally, resulting in death. These charges can carry grave consequences for the driver if he is convicted. It is possible that he could even get sentenced to death.

The conditions that the people inside the trailer of that driver’s truck got subjected to were horrific. At least thirty-nine people got packed inside the trailer for the one hundred and fifty-mile journey from Laredo to San Antonio. The refrigeration system on the trailer was broken, so the temperature inside the trailer was dangerously high. Some of the people who were in the trailer who did not die had to be hospitalized for a while before they could be released

There are various reasons why human trafficking is such a big problem in Texas. Agricultural operations looking for low-cost labor sometimes get their workers through illegal smuggling operations. Illegal immigrants are also often employed as domestic servants, and some immigrants find their way into the United States through illegal smuggling operations. Also, Mexican drug cartels often engage in trafficking illegal immigrants, in addition to illegal drugs.

In addition to the dangers of being transported like cargo in tractor trailers, the victims of human trafficking often endure forced labor and commercial sexual exploitation in various forms.  Statistics from the United States Department of Health and Human Services estimate that over twelve thousand illegal immigrants get trafficked into the country through Texas. Since human trafficking is seldom a solo operation, conspiracy charges often accompany trafficking charges when truck drivers or other people transporting illegal immigrants get caught in the act.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Steadfast Assistance for Texas Defendants

The penalties for human trafficking can be severe, especially if the people that were getting transported got hurt or killed in transit. If you got charged with a  crime related to human trafficking, do not despair.You might be able to work with an attorney to find an outcome that meets your needs better than you might expect. To learn more, call Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499 or connect with us through our online contact form.

 

Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses Reconciliation

August 3rd, 2017

Divorce is a process; it’s not just an event. For any divorcing couple, some length of time passes between the filing of divorce papers and the date that the divorce becomes final. The length of time that it will take for a couple to divorce depends upon a few factors, including the laws of the state where they are divorcing. Each state has a timetable for divorce proceedings. The length of a couple’s divorce also depends on the couple, and whether they work through the process quickly without having to discuss much, or whether they battle hard and delay the process by being unable to work out an agreement on the issues in their case instead of going to trial. There are also situations where divorce proceedings get put on hold or even abandoned completely because a couple decides to try to reconcile or does indeed reconcile.

Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie recently announced that they are taking a break from their divorce proceedings. While the two are not back together, they are working on some of the things that contributed to the demise of their relationship, and they have decided to pause the proceedings to see where things go. Other celebrity couples have done similar things, with some continuing to divorce and some letting the initial divorce filing fade into the background while remaining married, for better or for worse, sometimes for a long time and sometimes for just a few months or years before finally deciding to call it quits.

If celebrities are pausing divorce proceedings to consider reconciliation, you can be sure that many other people who are not celebrities are doing it, too. If you are divorcing and the thought of taking a break to work on things or think about things seems like it might be a good idea, there’s no harm in exploring the possibility. You can always forge ahead if you get the feeling that the divorce should continue. Of course, if the mere mention of the word reconciliation or taking a break to work on things makes you feel angry inside, then don’t do it. Many people put a lot of thought and effort into working through things before they file for divorce and once they have gotten to that point they are sure that it is the right choice for them. If that’s you, keep on moving through your divorce with confidence,

One of the ways that a couple can explore the idea of reconciliation is through couples counseling. Counseling can be beneficial regardless of whether the two of you decide to divorce or stay together. It can help you talk through some things that could make divorce proceedings go more smoothly, or it could make you realize that divorce isn’t really what either of you wants or needs.

If you are considering divorce and you have questions, call our office at (903) 753-7499 today to plan an initial consultation with Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra. If you prefer, you can visit us online anytime to submit an online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Shares Three Top Relationship Woes

July 22nd, 2017

Divorce begins with marriage, a marriage in which something has gone so wrong that the divorcing spouses believe it to be beyond repair. Divorce attorneys learn a lot about relationships as they help their divorcing clients navigate the legal process that ends their marriages. One of the things that divorce lawyers learn through working with their clients is that although there are many reasons that marriages fail, there are a few reasons that stand out as common marriage busters. If you are considering divorce and you recognize one of these common culprits as the reason why it’s a good idea to ask yourself whether you and your spouse might invest in your marriage by exploring the issue before investing time and money into getting divorced. When spouses realize that their marriage is in trouble and they start to talk about why they gain information about whether there’s a possibility for the marriage to be saved or whether the two of them are past the point of no return and moving forward with divorce is the healthiest option for them.

Children are undoubtedly a source of great love and joy to their parents. Unfortunately, spouses who have kids also have the potential to experience a marital breakdown in a way that couples without kids do not. It has very little to do with the children themselves, but it does involve each spouse’s beliefs and expectations regarding the care and upbringing of their kids. Raising kids takes a lot of time and effort, and disputes often arise from a difference in expectations regarding how spouses divvy up parenting time and responsibilities. Disagreements about family rules and discipline are also often cited as a major source of marital stress.

All couples could potentially fall prey to a ruined marriage due to a lack of communication. While people differ in how they communicate and the amount of communication that they prefer, it’s easy to see that little to no communication within a marriage can quickly become a deal-breaker. Communication within the context of marriage involves many things, from daily responsibilities and scheduling to beliefs, values, and feelings. We are not designed to read minds should we be expected to “know” what each other is doing or feeling. This is why when couples don’t talk, misunderstanding and resentment build and build until one or both spouses becomes angry and fights rather than conversations become the couple’s default method of communication.

A lack of intimacy, both the sexual variety and the non-sexual closeness that couples can maintain through their words and actions, can bring a marriage to its demise. Humans are made for closeness, and the physical and emotional connection that a couple can experience within their marriage is unique to that relationship. When one or both spouses stop reaching out to each other in an affectionate way, their bond becomes weaker and weaker until they feel more like roommates instead of spouses. If a couple is unwilling or unable to reconnect with each other, the marriage is likely to fail.

If you are considering divorce, call us at (903) 753-7499 today to arrange an initial consultation with Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra. If you prefer, visit us online anytime to submit an online contact form.

 

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Says Recent Prison Closures Reflect Both a Decrease in Criminal Activity and Improved Outcomes for Individuals Who Get Charged With Crimes

July 12th, 2017

Texas will close more prisons in 2017 than it has in any other year in history. The prison closures are possible because of a decrease in crime as well as an increase in options for resolving criminal cases without resorting to incarceration. Four prisons will get closed this year, which brings the total amount of closures to eight facilities over a period of six years.

The decrease in crimes being committed in Texas has been taking place gradually over the past decade or so. During that same time frame, lawmakers have brought about changes that give some individuals who get charged with crimes other options besides going to prison. Programs like diversion not only help Texans stay out of prison, they help them address the underlying issues that landed them there in the first place and give them the support and skills that they can use to choose different paths for their lives. For individuals that get charged with criminal behavior that is likely the result of a mental illness, mental health services provide a chance for a better life, instead of just passing the time behind bars only to be troubled by the same issues while they get incarcerated and after they are released. Legislative changes also contributed to a reduction in criminal charges and therefore a reduction in the amount of prison beds that the state needs. Property crime laws got overhauled in 2015, relieving the state of laws that doled out felony punishments to people who stole items that were worth very little. Reforms in other areas of the law have gotten proposed, but they have yet to pass, so it is unclear which, if any initiatives like changes to drug crime laws and modifications to age requirements for incarceration, will eventually become law.

The closure of Texas prisons started with the massive Central Unit in Sugar Land, followed by the Jesse R. Dawson State Jail and a pre-parole unit in Mineral Wells. Some of the facilities that got closed were state-run facilities and others, such as a privately operated intermediate sanctions facility in Houston that got closed last year. The decrease in the number of available prison beds had not created a shortage of beds, though, because the number of people who are getting sent to jail continues to drop. When prisons get closed, inmates get brought to other facilities and staff are also reassigned to other facilities, which has alleviated some of the problems that those facilities had been having with hiring and retaining good employees.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Strong and Confident Assistance for Texas Defendants

Texas defendants might not know just how many options they might have for resolving their criminal cases. If you got charged with a crime, you might be able to work with an attorney to find an outcome that meets your needs better than you might expect. To learn more, call Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499 or connect with us through our online contact form.

 

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Discusses Intoxication Manslaughter Verdict

July 2nd, 2017

One potential outcome that can result from driving while intoxicated is getting charged with intoxication manslaughter. No one who drinks and drives expects to get into a wreck while they are driving, and they do not intend to kill anyone. Unfortunately, alcohol use increases accident risk, which not only endangers the safety of the driver who has been drinking but also increases the chance that they will get in an accident and hurt or kill other people.

A man just got sentenced to fifteen years in prison in connection with the deaths of two people. The man got sentenced to fifteen years for each of the two people who died in the crash, but the judge ruled that the sentences will run concurrently. The man is also required to pay a five thousand dollar fine.

The fatal wreck happened in 2015.  The crash occurred as the man was speeding down a road and went over some railroad tracks, which sent his car flying through the air. The car landed on top of a motorcycle, killing a man and his wife.

The families of both the driver and the couple who died in the crash were present in the courtroom for the emotional conclusion to the man’s intoxication manslaughter trial. Members of the man’s family attended the hearing to show their love and support for him. People from the family of the deceased couple attended the hearing to try and gain closure for the untimely loss of two people who they loved very much.

When a person is charged with any DWI crime, including and especially intoxication manslaughter, they need strong support as they face their charges. A DWI and any related offenses that go along with it can significantly alter the course of a person’s life, as the case mentioned above illustrates. An experienced DWI defense attorney can help you understand the nature of the charges against you, including the possible penalties, and they can develop a defense strategy that takes all of your circumstances into account. For example, in the case discussed above, a significant portion of the defendant’s defense strategy involved educating the judge and jury about the defendant’s mental state. The man suffers from a mental disability that affects his learning ability and his overall level of functioning. The defense attorney also expressed his client’s deep remorse for what had happened and extended condolences to the victims’ family on behalf of his client.

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Uncompromising Support for DWI Defendants

If you face DWI charges or other charges that are related to a DWI, it is essential that you get help from a Texas DWI defense attorney. A knowledgeable defense attorney can help you understand the charges and the potential effects of your DWI case on each area your life.  You can plan for an initial consultation with Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra today, by calling our office at (903) 753-7499. Alternatively, you can arrange an initial consultation with us through the online contact form on our website.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Reminds Parents to Keep Children Safely Supervised this Summer

June 19th, 2017

The school year is over, and parents will be spending much more time with their kids than they do during the school year. When you are enjoying this summer with your kids, remember two key words – safety and supervision. When parents do not keep their children safe by providing adequate supervision, there is a risk that the children could be harmed, or even worse, killed.

A Texas mother faces child endangerment charges in connection with the deaths of her two young children. According to reports from officials, the woman initially claimed that the girls might have gotten sick after smelling and perhaps eating wildflowers at a local park. Upon further investigation, authorities found that the children had been left in a vehicle for fifteen hours with no water or food, in temperatures that could have been upwards of ninety degrees during some of that time.

Someone allegedly heard the girls, who were one and two years old, crying and asked whether they wanted to go inside. The children’s mother allegedly assured the person that the girls would cry themselves to sleep. A friend of the children’s mother may also have spent some time with them out in the car. The mother of the two little girls took them out of the vehicle around noon the next day and gave them baths before taking them to the hospital. The children may have been unresponsive but alive when they arrived at the hospital, but both girls later died in the hospital. The Bexar County Medical Examiner is investigating the deaths and report that no final determination of the manner and cause of death will be available for up to twelve weeks.

Children, especially very young children, require adult supervision to stay safe. Each child has supervision needs that grow and change as they become older and more mature. Some areas in which parents may have difficulty understanding or make inappropriate choices regarding their children’s supervision needs include leaving children alone in a car and leaving them at home alone. There is no “legal age” when it comes to staying home alone, but there are many factors to consider including the child or children’s ages, emotional maturity, nd overall capability as well as the location and design of the home. The number of children, the amount of time that they are alone, and the ability of the child to contact a responsible and available adult are also important things to consider.

Under Texas law, it is a crime to leave a child who is under seven years old in a vehicle for longer than five minutes if someone who is fourteen years of age or older is not in the vehicle with them. It is not recommended that anyone leave a child unattended in a vehicle for any length of time because it is just too dangerous, especially in hot weather, and it can only take a few minutes for a child to develop heat stroke or heat exhaustion which could result in death or permanent disability.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Experienced Assistance for Texas Defendants

If you get charged with a crime in Texas, call Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499 or connect with us through our online contact form.