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As a divorced parent in Texas, you have rights

When you made the decision to cut ties with your spouse by filing a divorce petition in a Texas court, you were not simultaneously abdicating your parental obligations. Neither does a divorce negate your parental rights. In short, spouses divorce spouses; parents do not divorce children. Like most parents who have gone through similar experiences, you were no doubt quite hopeful that, with lots of love and support, your kids would be able to successfully adapt to a new lifestyle.

What you didn't expect was that your ex would try to impede your parent/child relationships and would do everything in his or her power to try to turn your kids against you. Parental alienation is a real issue, and many post-divorce parents suffer when their former spouses target them. That's why it helps to know how to recognize a serious problem and also what to do about it.

Digital assets an important part of estate planning and probate

Digital assets have quickly become an important part of the average Texas resident's life. Many people depend upon digital accounts for communication, social interaction, financial transactions as well as a number of other things. With this in mind, digital assets may need to be addressed throughout the estate planning and probate process.

Many individuals have decided to utilize paperless billing and account statements. There are benefits to this; however, it also makes it difficult to follow the paper trail to discover items that may need to be taken into consideration upon one's death. To avoid potential problems, the individual will want to leave a detailed listing of all digital assets. Along with this, he or she will want to identify who should be responsible for managing these digital assets, and an updated listing of all passwords and account numbers should be kept in a secure yet accessible location.

Three things to know about father’s rights

As a father, facing a child custody proceeding can leave you feeling uncertain and even prematurely defeated about your future with your children. Old stereotypes may lead you to believe that Texas courts favor awarding mothers with sole or primary custody rights.

However, such misconceptions are both outdated and underestimate your own rights as a parent. Courts across the state favor encouraging the child’s relationship with both parents whenever possible, ultimately always acting in the best interests of the child. With this in mind, what should you know before facing the child custody process?

Steps to take now to secure a strong post-divorce future

When making the choice to end a marriage, there a specific things a person can do to strengthen his or her financial future. By being intentional throughout the divorce process, a person can lay the foundation of a strong and stable financial future. Smart money management and a fair financial settlement are smart goals to have during a divorce. 

A Texas reader will have to adjust his or her lifestyle during a divorce. It can be helpful to go ahead and start making adjustments right away by reducing spending and making a budget. This can give a person a clear view of his or financial circumstances and what lifestyle changes will be necessary during the time of separation and post-divorce transition. 

Helping children walk through the complexities of divorce

The end of a marriage can often be the most difficult for the youngest members of a Texas family. Children naturally struggle when their parents choose to move forward with divorce, but there are things parents can do to ease the strain that kids may feel. It's easy to become wrapped up in temporary feelings and emotions during this process, but it is most beneficial to think about what will be best over the long term.

When there is constant conflict and fighting in a marriage, moving forward with divorce can be the most beneficial step for the children. However, it's still prudent to protect their mental health after the marriage is over as well. One way parents can do this is by providing as much consistency as possible. This can be done by allowing them to remain in the same school, stay in the same home or in many other ways.

Singles need estate planning and probate help too

People who are not married or those who do not have kids are significantly less likely to think about the legal steps they may need to take to protect their future interests. Texas singles can also benefit from careful planning, and they may also need to seek assistance with estate planning and probate matters. A few simple steps can help a person avoid complications in the future. 

One of the most important estate planning steps a person can take is to draft a basic will. This allows a person to decide what will happen to his or her stuff, outline how assets are to be distributed and even plan for the care of a beloved pet. However, there are benefits to drafting certain documents that allow singles to plan for care they may need in the future. 

Texas residential construction defects can be addressed, remedied

The Denton law firm of Jones & Associates is a passionate advocate for Texas individuals and families who need diligent legal help. We duly note on our website the firm’s “singular mission of holding those who harm our clients accountable to the fullest extent allowed by the law.”

One of our core practice areas is consumer protection. That is obviously a universe replete with many challenges and obstacles. Good-faith consumers are routinely defrauded or underserved by third parties they contract with or otherwise receive services from.

Securing appropriate financial support in a divorce

When navigating the end of a marriage, one of the most common concerns people have relates to their financial future. Divorce will bring significant financial change to the lives of both parties, and it can be quite important to determine a fair amount of spousal support, when applicable. Unless there is a need for alimony while the divorce proceedings are pending, this step usually comes further along in the divorce process, typically after determining how marital property should be divided.

When Texas family courts are considering how much spousal support a person should get or how long those payments should last, the entire marriage and other factors will be considered. The length of the marriage, the financial standing of both parties, the health of both spouses and even the lifestyle enjoyed during the marriage can affect spousal support. In many cases, spousal support will only be given for a limited amount of time, typically long enough for the recipient to adjust to new financial circumstances.

The most common issues that affect estate planning and probate

The process of planning for the future and putting legal and financial protections in place is not easy. There are often difficult emotions and complex legal or financial factors to consider as a person drafts these plans, and certain issues can make it even more difficult. Family fighting, changes in tax laws and the state of the market are the most common issues that can complicate estate planning and probate.

When conflict is present in a Texas family, it can make it remarkably difficult to make smart plans for the future. Estate planning is already complex in blended families, and the presence of conflict complicates the process of naming beneficiaries, communicating plans and more. Disagreements within a family can also mean that people may want to change existing plans.

How to respond to being scammed

There is nothing more frustrating than realizing you’ve been scammed. Maybe you bought a faulty product, maybe you financed a bogus cause; whatever happened, your money is now with a scammer and you’re feeling the sting.

The good news is that there are consumer protections in place designed to keep you safe. Texas is equipped with the Deceptive Trade Practices Act (DTPA), a law designed to punish scammers and repay the people who were scammed. If you think you’ve been had, don’t wait to push the issue.

Email Amy Jones

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Denton, TX 76201

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