Posts Tagged ‘Texas Family Law Attorney’

Texas Family Law Attorney Says Women in India are Asking for Greater Court Oversight of Divorces

Sunday, April 30th, 2017

The rules of divorce are not uniform throughout the world. In many countries like the United States, divorce is a legal process that must be done through the court system to be valid. In some places, though, divorce does not always have to pass through the court system. For example, in India, a man may declare a divorce from his wife, irrevocable and effective immediately, simply by saying or writing the word “talaq” three times.

The idea of an instant and irrevocable divorce may seem strange enough because no such provision exists here in the United States, but the rules for divorce in India are even more unlike American divorce rules in that they do not apply equally to men and women. A wife may not declare “talaq” against her husband. If a woman in India would like to divorce her husband, she must consult with a cleric first, and there is a formal process that she must follow if she would like to receive financial support from him.

Women in India are becoming increasingly frustrated with the problems that come from having unequal divorce rules for men and women. One out of every eleven Indian women who have married has had one or more marriages that ended with “talaq” divorce. When women are divorced by “talaq,” it is tough for them to get financial support from their former husbands, so the divorced women and their children are at a high risk for poverty. It is evident from the accounts of many Indian women that “talaq” divorce creates a permissive environment for physical and emotional abuse. Many women remain in physically and emotionally abusive relationships because they have no way of supporting themselves and their children economically and they fear that if they stand up to their husbands and ask them to stop the abuse, then their husbands will get angry and divorce them by “talaq.” Some of the women who have experienced “talaq” divorce have petitioned the Supreme Court of India, seeking a ban on instant divorce. Lest we think that such a ban is unlikely, it is important to remember that some nations like Pakistan, Egypt, and Tunisia that once allowed “talaq” divorces have banned the practice and have given responsibility for overseeing divorces to their judicial systems.

Opposition to a ban on “talaq” divorce comes from some members of the Muslim community who feel that it is an integral practice within the religion of Islam. However, not all Muslims agree. Some Muslims say that the provisions for divorce that are in the Quran not only apply equally to men and women, they also require a couple to think things through and try to reconcile before they may divorce. The Supreme Court of India will examine the issue and determine whether a ban on “talaq” divorce would be constitutional.

In Texas, the laws of the State of Texas govern all divorce proceedings. If you have questions about your Texas divorce, a family law attorney can help you find the answers that you need. Call  (903) 753-7499 today to schedule a consultation with Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra. You may also visit us online and submit a convenient online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Talks about Pets and Your Divorce

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

Most couples and families regard their pets as members of the family. We take them with us on adventures, we curl up with them on the couch, we play with them, and we love them in so many ways. In return, they love us faithfully and bring so much joy into our lives. When a couple who has pets divorces, they will need to decide how they will handle the care and company of their pets.

A recent change to the divorce laws in Alaska requires courts to consider the “well-being of the animal” in divorce cases where custody of a pet is contested. The change went into effect this past January, and it makes Alaska the first state to require that courts address the needs of an animal when they make decisions about how they will assign ownership of that animal in a divorce case. The law permits courts to assign ownership of an animal to one party or the other or to order joint custody in situations where the well-being of the animal would be served best by that arrangement.

Most states, including Texas, treat animals as personal property. When a couple divorces, the issue of who will get to keep which animals gets addressed in the property settlement portion of the divorce proceedings. Even though animals are considered property under the law, divorcing couples who have pets are free to make agreements about how they want to handle issues associated with pet care and ownership.

If you have pets and you are divorcing, you might already be aware that your pets will experience your divorce on both a physical level and an emotional level. You and your pet may both already be experiencing feelings associated with the change in the amount of time that you spend together if that has already changed for you. These feelings, along with the fact that pets who spend time with each of their “people” adjust more easily to their new lifestyle, are good reasons to do your best to work things out with your spouse as far as agreeing to a schedule for pet care and making an agreement about pet-related expenses. Any agreement that the two of you create on your own will serve your needs and the needs of your pets much better than a judge-designed court order can because the court will simply consider the pets as property and distribute them as part of your property agreement.

If you have pets and you are getting divorced, be sure to take the time to talk about your pets with your spouse. Pets can be treated more like family members and less like property when a divorcing couple makes an agreement regarding their care and custody instead of leaving the matter of their disposition to a judge. If you have questions about how to address the needs of your pets in your Texas divorce, please contact Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499 to schedule a consultation. Alternatively, you may visit us online and submit a convenient online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses Proposed Bills That Would Make Divorcing More Difficult

Tuesday, February 28th, 2017

Two recently introduced bills could make getting a divorce in Texas more difficult if either or both of them pass. State Representative Matt Krause introduced SB 93 because he wants Texas to do away with no-fault divorce. No-fault divorce is a divorce based upon “insupportability,” which means that one or both spouses find the other intolerable, and they cannot work things out. The second bill that he introduced, HB 65, would increase the waiting period for a Texas divorce from 60 days to 180 days if the couple has minor children.

If no-fault divorce is no longer an option in Texas, the party who is seeking a divorce will have to name one of the six fault-based grounds for divorce in their divorce filing. The six options that they have to choose from are confinement in a mental hospital, cruelty, adultery, abandonment, living apart, and conviction of a felony. Not only will they have to name the grounds for their divorce, but they will also have to present evidence that their alleged grounds for divorce are true.

The potential consequences of taking no-fault divorce off of the table may include less privacy, fewer divorce cases settling outside of court, and people engaging in behaviors that they may not have chosen if no-fault divorce were an option. Some couples who do have fault-based grounds for divorce currently choose no-fault divorce because they don’t want to disclose the details of why their marriage failed in court or during alternative dispute resolution. These couples may want to focus on the legal mechanics of their divorce and address healing from the things that went wrong in their marriage through therapy. They may have other reasons for not wanting to select a fault-based grounds for divorce. Whatever their reason is, removing no-fault divorce as a choice will eliminate the privacy that citing “insupportability” currently provides.

Citing a fault-based grounds for divorce and then having to provide evidence to support it can increase the amount of conflict between divorcing spouses. It is possible that an increase in conflict could stand in the way of some couples being able to resolve their divorces through mediation or reach divorce settlements before their scheduled trial date. Divorces that get mediated or which settle before trial cost less; and both parties are more likely to be satisfied with the outcome of their divorce than parties whose divorce cases were decided by the court. This makes sense because when parties go to court, one “wins” and the other “loses”.

In a marriage where the spouses have fallen out of love and have no desire to try to fall back in love, being able to call it quits without some major event happening can provide relief for both spouses. Unfortunately, if no-fault divorce is taken off of the table, a spouse may decide to have an affair or engage in an activity that falls under one of the other fault-based grounds for divorce. After all, they would need some “reason” to end their marriage when they would have preferred to end their marriage amicably with a no-fault divorce and then pursue a different relationship, live apart, or otherwise move on with their life without engaging in that behavior.

If you would like to learn more about divorce in Texas, please contact Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499 to schedule a consultation, or visit us online and submit a convenient online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Talks about Divorces Involving Business Ownership

Sunday, January 1st, 2017

Some couples have relatively few types of assets to concern themselves with when they divorce. Others may own real estate, investments, or even one or more businesses. If you or your spouse owns a business, or, if you own a business together, it is essential that you take great care to ensure that the hard work that either or both of you have invested into your business over the years gets preserved during your divorce.

Just as with other types of assets, the issue of how to handle business ownership in a divorce is best addressed by agreement of the parties, and not by a judge who knows little or nothing about you, your family, and your business. Regardless of the current level of conflict in your divorce, it is important that you and your spouse work together with your attorneys to discuss the future of your business, and that the two of you make every effort to reach an agreement about what that future is.

In addition to working with your attorneys to discuss the future of your business, it is often worth consulting with a financial advisor because they can provide you and your attorney with valuable information like estimates of the value of the enterprise and its assets, cash flow, and liquidity. When you have gotten a clear picture of what your business is worth, you can begin to think about how you would like to acknowledge that value in your divorce settlement. There are many ways that couples who own one or more businesses, either together or separately, can structure a divorce settlement.

If you own a business that your spouse is not involved in, you may want to think about what other assets could, when taken as a group, have approximately the same value as the business. Your spouse may be happy to take that group of assets while you retain ownership, control, and all of the other benefits of your business. Of course, it is possible that your spouse may prefer a different arrangement, or they may be the one who owns the business, and you may have to engage in discussion about what will work well for each of you. It is possible that either or both of you are interested in selling your business, or in selling your interest in the firm. These are all potential solutions that you can discuss with your spouse. As you have these discussions, keep in mind that there are many creative ways that spouses can structure a divorce agreement involving a business, and any solution that the two of you can come up with is likely to work better for your family than a solution that is devised by the court.

If either you or your spouse owns a business or you own a business together, a Texas Family Law Attorney can help you to account for your business and all of your other assets as part of your Texas divorce. To learn more, please contact attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499 to arrange a consultation, or visit us online and submit a convenient online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Shares Tips for Managing Finances During and After Divorce

Friday, December 30th, 2016

If you are divorcing, you may wonder how you will be able to afford to take this much-needed step towards personal freedom. Divorce does cost money, but it is important that you do not put it off or even worse give up on it out of fear that you cannot afford it. The following tips can help you secure your finances before, during and after your divorce.

When divorcing spouses maintain a focus on agreement, they save money. Divorce is not easy, but the notion that cooperation can cut costs can be a powerful motivator to set conflict aside. One way in which agreement can reduce the financial burden of divorce is in the area of legal fees. It is important that each spouse retains his or her own attorney, but the amount of work that your attorney has to do on your behalf is directly connected to the amount that you will end up paying them. If you and your soon to be former spouse are approaching your attorneys with drafts of a divorce agreement that you have worked on together, you will not spend as much on legal fees as you would if you are fighting with each other through your attorneys about who should get which assets and what your parenting plan should look like, if you have children.

In reality, not all divorces can be resolved amicably. Fortunately, you can keep your costs down regardless of the level of conflict in your divorce. Knowing the details of your personal and household finances is one of these strategies. You can gather information about your debt and any marital debts that you and your spouse have, and you can do some research and find out what your household expenses are as well as what you might expect to pay to establish a new home for yourself.

Making financially wise decisions during your divorce can reduce not only the up-front costs of divorce but also the long-term costs. Divorce is an emotional process, but it is essential for your financial well-being that you do your best to address your emotional needs – through counseling, talking with supportive friends or whatever works for you – and make financial decisions from a purely practical frame of mind. For example, you may have to work through your feelings about your marital home before you can do an honest and sufficiently detailed calculation to determine whether it makes sense to try to keep it on either a short-term or a long-term basis.

As you and your soon to be former spouse work through your divorce, see whether the two of you can agree on whether to sell any items to make more cash available to pay off debts or divide amongst each other. There are laws that govern marital property, so you must check with your attorneys before selling anything because an improper sale is illegal. Selling items requires consulting with your attorney, but you are free to reduce your personal expenses by eliminating unnecessary spending, starting your new household with only the bare minimum of utilities and looking for ways to save money on one-time and recurring costs.

While you work to build a strong financial future for yourself, a Texas Family Law Attorney can help you pursue an outcome in your divorce that will meet your current and future needs. To learn more, please contact attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499 to arrange a consultation, or visit us online and submit a convenient online contact form.

Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses How to Talk to Children about Divorce

Sunday, November 6th, 2016

There’s no doubt about it – thinking about talking to your kids about divorce can bring up many different emotions. You might fear that you will damage your beloved children by divorcing, or by making a mistake when you have the dreaded conversation. You might be angry that you are getting divorced and resentful that you even have to have the divorce talk with your kids at all. It’s possible that you are sad, anxious, or any other feeling or combination of feelings as well. Despite all of that, though, once you and your soon to be former spouse have decided for certain that you are divorcing, it is time for you to plan for this crucial conversation together, and for delivering the news together, as a united front.

Introducing your children to the fact that you and their other parent are divorcing is a serious subject and must be handled with the utmost care. It’s time to set aside your differences for the time being and work together to decide when the conversation will take place, map out who will say what, and agree on ground rules for creating a calm and reassuring tone during “the talk”. When planning a time to talk, be sure to allow for as much time as you will need, including plenty of time for questions – because there will be lots of those.

When you plan out what you are going to say, it is important to be truthful without placing blame or bringing negativity to the table. For example, instead of saying that you are divorcing because one of you has been unfaithful, you can say that your relationship is not working out. Be sure to include plenty of reassurance that each of you loves each of your children and that you always will, because even though you might think that is obvious, it is not always visible to children, and you can’t say it too many times. Reassuring children that it is not their fault is also important. You know your kids best, and it may be helpful to think of some things to include in the conversation that will speak to each of them about things that are most important to them. This might mean talking about whether they’ll be remaining in the same school, talking about having two homes, discussing spending time with each parent, talking about spending time with friends, or anything else that you know the feel strongly about.

When it’s time to sit down with the kids and have the conversation, stick to your plan and create a gentle and reassuring tone for the discussion. Keep your conversation simple, age-appropriate, and relevant to your children’s lives, be sure to ask them whether they have any questions afterward, and answer questions as honestly as you can without being negative or disrespectful. By following the aforementioned suggestions, you can use this challenging conversation to set the stage for healthy relationships between each of you and your children as well as a cooperative and healthy co-parenting relationship between the two of you.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – Your Texas Divorce Attorney

Get answers to your questions about Texas divorce today – call Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499.

Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses the Impact of Divorce on Children

Monday, October 31st, 2016

Divorcing parents are likely to have heard many things about how their divorce is likely to affect their children, and not all of those things are good. Perhaps well-meaning friends or family members have shared their opinions about the topic. Maybe your spouse has weighed in on the issue, especially if they do not want to get a divorce. Wherever the negative information is coming from, you need to hear the other side of the story and it goes like this: each child is affected differently by divorce, and not all effects of divorce on children are negative. If ending your marriage is the right choice for and your spouse, there is a good chance that your kids will benefit from the split, especially if the two of you handle it (and them) with the utmost care and respect.

Both parents and children experience a range of emotions during the divorce process. While the age of a child and the relationship between that child and each of his or her parents do shape the child’s experience of the divorce, there are other factors that influence it as well. For example, sibling bonds can become stronger. This strengthening of the sibling relationship has been documented in many different types of divorce scenarios, including the typical situation where the children all travel between their parents’ homes together. However, it also occurs in sibling groups where the children are not always all together in the same place at the same time.

Another possible effect of your divorce on your kids is relief. This is especially so in situations where the marriage has been strained for some time. Children sense tension, and even when parents take great care to argue out of earshot of the children and otherwise conceal the divide between them, the kids are often aware that all is not well in the home. When parents separate, there may still be some tension, but it will be significantly reduced and will continue to decline as time passes since the divorce. As the amount of tension between parents decreases, so will the children’s experience with it.

Divorce can also show children resilience and problem-solving in action. The attitudes and actions of you and your spouse are a major factor in your children’s overall experience with your divorce. When the two of you work together to, for example, figure out how to earn enough money to support two households, your children will see how you were able to solve that problem by working together to find a solution that works for the family as a whole. Likewise, if your children hear the two of you communicating with each other in a respectful way, they will see that people who disagree can treat each other with kindness and respect.

As you can see, divorce does not have to be a negative experience for children. Parents can continue to maintain loving and supportive relationships with each of their children throughout and after their divorce. Divorcing parents can take comfort in knowing that they have the power to shape their children’s experience of divorce for the better by making positive choices about how they approach their divorce and their interactions with their soon to be former spouse.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – The Ally You Need for Your Texas Divorce

Get answers to your questions about Texas divorce today – call Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499.

Texas Family Law Attorney Discusses the Mathematics of Divorce

Thursday, September 15th, 2016

Many people view divorce as an emotional process first and a practical process second. It is not unusual that people think about it in that way because divorce is, at its simplest, undoing something which two people did because of the feelings that they had for one another. It is important that divorcing couples remember that there is also a practical, mathematical side to divorce. In fact, it is the mathematical information that you will explore during the divorce process – the information that you will see regarding property, assets, and even parenting time – that you can readily use to assess what your options for settling your divorce.

When people get divorced, they are likely to have ideas about what they would like to accomplish as a result other than ending their marriage. These ideas are usually connected to numbers. For example, it is possible that you know what percentage of parenting time would be ideal for you. Also, you may know which items of personal property you would most like to have, as well as what the values of those items are. It is a good thing to think about your divorce in terms of numbers like these because you’ll need that information to determine how the things that you most want could fit into a fair distribution of the marital estate. It is possible to take the numbers that are related to the property and parenting situations of you and your spouse and combine them in many different ways. This good, because it increases the possibility that the two of you will agree on one of those possible combinations and be able to turn it into a divorce settlement instead of going to trial.

I realize that it can be difficult to see past all of the emotions to see the numbers related to your divorce for what they are. For example, you may have a strong attachment to your marital home, and you may want to pursue a settlement that would keep you in that home. Unfortunately, it is possible that given the numbers associated with your particular situation, buying out your spouse’s share of the home would not be a wise financial decision. If you discover this, look at the numbers again and see whether it might be better if you sell the house and split the proceeds. If that does not appeal to both of you, know that there are many different ways in which couples can choose to dispose of their homes. Likewise, parenting time agreements are as unique and varied as the couples who create them, and they contain all kinds of different percentages that work for the families who abide by them.

When you look at the numbers in your Texas divorce, you can get a sense of how a proposed settlement could affect your life now and into the future. We understand that it can sometimes be difficult to acknowledge the numbers that you see in terms of what they mean regarding the outcome that you want. However, it is often less difficult to do that than it is to deal with the long-term fallout of accepting a proposed property settlement or parenting agreement that does not serve your best interests.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – Support for Your Texas Divorce

Learn more about Texas divorce today – call Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499 to learn more about your legal rights and options.

Texas Family Law Attorney Offers Back to School Tips for Divorce Clients

Wednesday, August 31st, 2016

The start of a new school year brings up a wide variety of feelings for both children and their parents. When a family is navigating a divorce, there are even more feelings and practical concerns that must be acknowledged to ensure a smooth transition from summertime to the academic year for children and parents. Divorcing families may find the following information helpful as they begin the school year:

It is often the case that any routines that a family has in place at the beginning of a summer slip out of the picture by the time that it is time to return to school. The start of the school year is a crucial time to reestablish routines because a lot of things happen in the family’s life each day. Routines provide a blueprint for navigating all of those things. Divorcing parents often find that when they have similar routines in their separate households, the entire family thrives. Whether the two of you communicate well or not, the subject of household and school day routines is something that if you make an effort to work together, everyone’s life will run more smoothly, and each of you will be better able to focus on enjoying your children and supporting them in school and life. At the most basic level, compare notes on household routines and make sure that they are similar enough that they do not clash. They do not have to be the same, but, for example, if there is screen time after dinner in one household but not in the other, there is potential for conflict which could be avoided by simply having routines that are more similar. Also, be sure that the kids know what to expect from each parent (and what each parent expects of them) on school days and weekends.

Whether your children are attending the same school that they were last year or a different school, it is important for each parent to be familiar with each child’s school and their new teachers. Teachers are best able to serve the children in their classrooms when they know both the child and their parents. They also benefit from knowing basic information about what has been going on lately in your family. If you are the parent who has primary legal rights and responsibilities for your children, make sure that your children’s school, teachers, doctors, coaches, and anyone else that your kids spend time with knows that they are to share information about your children freely with your children’s other parent. It is the right thing to do, and it will also save you the work of having to make copies, send messages, and make phone calls to share the information yourself. Also, it is important that parents understand that most children wish that both parents could be there to see them perform, play sports, or do whatever it is that they are doing at the event. This does not mean that the two of you have to sit together, but consider making an agreement with your children’s other parent that both of you can attend all of their school events.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – Divorce Support for Texas Families

Learn more about Texas divorce today – call Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499.

Texas Family Law Attorney Says Reasonable Expectations are Helpful for Divorce Clients

Sunday, July 31st, 2016

Did you know that the expectations that you have regarding your divorce have the potential to either leave you open to the possibility of pleasant surprises throughout the process or leave you feeling dissatisfied most or all of the time? As with many things in life, in divorce, the expectations that you have will shape your experience. If you keep this in mind, you may be able to keep your expectations realistic, or even avoid having any expectations at all regarding certain things. The following examples provide a look at some aspects of divorce cases where your expectations could help or harm you.

Timing is a moving target when it comes to divorce cases. While it is possible for an attorney to provide an estimate of how long your divorce case is likely to take, committing this estimate to your memory as an expectation of when your divorce will be final can be problematic. It is understandable to want to plan ahead as you move your life forward. However, if you expect your case to be complete by a certain date and that date comes and goes before your case is over, you may experience frustration and disappointment. If instead, you take the estimate that you have, and you double it, there is a chance that you might resolve your case within that time frame. It may even be finalized earlier, which could leave you feeling rather satisfied. Divorce cases involve many different people, courts and attorneys have schedules and case loads, and clients often need time to think through many different decisions throughout the process. When you think of a divorce case in this way, you can see how all of those moving pieces can affect the timing of the outcome, and how it will benefit you to keep a flexible mindset about when your case will be complete.

Expectations about the cost of your divorce can also cause trouble. Whether you run into trouble because the household budget that you created so carefully is not working with how things are going for you or unexpected issues have come up that will increase the amount of work that your attorney will be doing on your behalf, you may encounter some surprises. If you received an estimate of how much your divorce is likely to cost, it might be helpful to double that and then be pleasantly surprised if it costs less, instead of expecting that the estimate was the final word on cost and feeling upset each time an unexpected expense arises.

When it comes to expecting a particular outcome for your divorce case, it is a good idea to know what you want to get out of your divorce. It is also good to know which things mean the most to you and which have more room for discussion and debate. The only thing that you can reasonably expect regarding an outcome is that you are not likely to get everything that you would have liked to. However, it is reasonable to think that you will resolve your case in a way that helps you retain most of what is most important to you and accomplishes some of what you would like. Approaching divorce with reasonable expectations helps you to be flexible and make the best decisions that you can make during the divorce process.

Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra – The Knowledge and Support that You Need Now

Learn more about Texas divorce today – call Texas Family Law Attorney Alex Tyra at (903) 753-7499.