Archive for September, 2015

Texas Family Law Attorney Explains Collaborative Divorce

Wednesday, September 30th, 2015

If you are considering filing for divorce, or if you have recently filed for divorce, you may have heard of the term “collaborative divorce”. If you have heard of collaborative divorce and you are wondering what it is, you have come to the right place. I feel as though it is important that divorcing Texans understand what collaborative divorce is, because it has been used to accomplish many positive outcomes in Texas divorce cases.

In a collaborative divorce, the parties work with their lawyers to reach agreements on the issues that are relevant to their case, instead of having a judge decide on those issues in court. Couples who have resolved their divorce cases through collaborative divorce are often very satisfied with the outcomes in their cases. Couples with children who have resolved their divorce cases through the process of collaborative divorce also report satisfaction with the outcomes of their cases, not only for themselves but for their children as well.

Collaborative divorce is a process that a couple may choose to engage in if both spouses are committed to resolving their divorce without litigation. Before a couple can resolve their divorce collaboratively, both parties must sign a contract which indicates their commitment to completing the process. That same contract also specifies that the attorneys who represent the spouses in their collaborative divorce are prohibited from representing either party in family-related litigation in the future.

It is important to note that the process of collaborative divorce is different from both arbitration and mediation. In arbitration, the parties explain their positions to an arbitrator, who then decides the outcome of the matter. Mediation is a process in which a neutral party, the mediator, works with the parties both separately and together in an attempt to reach an agreement. The process of collaborative divorce involves multiple meetings where both parties are present with their attorneys. The meetings have limited agendas, so as to keep the parties and their attorneys focused on and working towards the goal of reaching an agreement.

Collaborative divorce provides a method by which parties can work through the issues of parenting time, child support, and property distribution to craft a divorce agreement that could give each of them some of what they most want out of their divorce. Many couples with and without children are choosing collaborative divorce because it enables them to avoid the time, expense, and emotional turmoil that often accompanies a trial. Sometimes, even couples who are involved in high-conflict relationships are able to resolve their divorces through the collaborative divorce process because they go through the process with the assistance of their attorneys.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – Providing Strong Advocacy for Divorcing Texans

Getting divorced is not easy, but there are some options for resolving your divorce case that may be easier than others. If you would like to learn more about collaborative divorce, Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra can help you. Call our office today, at (903) 753-7499.


Texas DWI Defense Attorney Discusses Changes to Drunk Driving Laws

Saturday, September 19th, 2015

As of September 1, 2015, Texas laws regarding drinking and driving got even tougher. Ignition interlock devices will now be required for all offenders with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher if they wish to continue driving after they have been arrested for DWI. The devices prevent people from driving if they have consumed any alcohol, because the driver must breathe into the device before attempting to start their vehicle. The old DWI law gave arrested offenders the option of applying for a restricted driver’s license following their arrest. The new law gives drivers who are arrested for DWI the choice of either applying for an ignition interlock within fifteen days of their arrest or giving up their driving privileges altogether. The length of time that a driver must use an ignition interlock for depends upon whether it is their first offense, in which case they must use it for ninety days, or a subsequent offense, which will require one hundred and eighty days of use.

The new law is a significant departure from previous rules which only required repeat offenders and individuals with blood alcohol levels of .15 or greater to install ignition interlock devices on their vehicles. The new drunk driving law, with its harsher penalty, raises the stakes for drivers who are accused of driving under the influence of alcohol. If you are arrested and charged with DWI, it is essential that you contact a Texas criminal defense attorney. Your attorney can examine your case from every possible angle, so that you have the greatest possible chance of avoiding a conviction and the intrusive ignition interlock requirement.

While it is true that license suspensions are hard to enforce and ignition interlocks do enable individuals to continue driving as long as they refrain from drinking alcohol, it is important that these devices be reserved for drivers who actually need them. The new law, with its requirement that all offenders, even first-time offenders, obtain an ignition interlock creates a risk that drivers who are wrongfully convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol will be required to install ignition interlock devices in their vehicles.

Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Comprehensive Legal Support When You Need it Most

Now that ignition interlock devices are required for all drivers who are arrested for DWI, drivers have even more at stake following a DWI arrest then they did previously. In addition to fines, jail time, and other far-reaching consequences, a driver who is accused of driving under the influence of alcohol could be required to install an ignition interlock device on his or her vehicle. This means that now, more than ever, it is absolutely essential that any driver who is accused of driving under the influence of alcohol contact an experienced Texas DWI Defense Attorney right away. If you have been arrested for DWI, call Texas DWI Defense Attorney Alex Tyra, at (903) 753-7499, or contact us online.



Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Discusses the Decriminalization of Truancy

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

A sweeping change in the law ushered in the start of the new school year in Texas. Truancy is finally no longer a crime in Texas. Students who have previously been charged with truancy can breathe a sigh of relief. The provisions of the new law erase any unpaid truancy fines. The law also reinstates all drivers’ licenses that had been suspended as the result of truancy convictions and recalls all active truancy warrants, giving students who had previously been convicted of truancy a clean slate.

Truancy charges were very, very common prior to its recent decriminalization. This is not surprising, because students could be charged with truancy after only ten unexcused absences. In Dallas alone, the recent changes in school attendance law will affect twenty seven thousand students who had been previously charged with truancy.

The issue of children not attending school is going to be handled differently in Texas from now on. School districts must now make efforts to reach out to and work with any students who receive more than ten unexcused absences before they can take any legal action against them. If any legal action is to be taken after the school district tries to help a student address his or her attendance issues, it will be in the form of a civil case. Civil truancy cases are only allowed under certain circumstances. For example, students are immune from civil actions regarding truancy when they are the primary breadwinner for their family, or if they are homeless, pregnant, or in the state’s foster care system. In some counties, special needs students and students with mental health concerns are also exempt from civil truancy cases.

In situations where a civil action is pursued by a school district and the school district prevails, any student who does not comply with a court order can be held in contempt of court. The consequences of being held in contempt include fines of up to a hundred dollars, as well as license suspension. Parents should also note that the change in the law applies to students. Parents may still be charged with a Class C misdemeanor if they fail to send their kids to school.

Texas Criminal Defense Attorney Alex Tyra – Providing Strong Defense When Texans Need it Most

Although truancy is no longer a crime, there are still many ways in which teenagers and young adults can find themselves being accused of being on the wrong side of the law. If you are charged with any type of crime, it is important that you contact a Texas Criminal Defense Attorney right away. Criminal charges can have far-reaching impacts on many different areas of your life, so there is a lot at stake. Attorney Alex Tyra is a criminal defense attorney with experience in handling many different types of criminal matters. He may be able to help you with your criminal case, too. To learn more, call our office at (903) 753-7499 today. Alternatively, you may contact us online.