Domestic Violence

13 posts

Where Do You File For Divorce and What to Do After Filing

The decision A divorce isn’t a process that a lot of people know much about before they begin and there tend to be a lot of questions.  The first step of a divorce is to file for divorce, or rather to petition the court for a divorce.  I will go into that briefly before answering one of the biggest questions, where do I file for divorce?  You  can  find more information about it elsewhere  on our blog as well. Filing For Divorce Filing for divorce is the process during which you submit paperwork to the court stating that you are seeking a divorce.  This is called the Original Petition For Divorce.  Essentially this states the reasons for which you are filing for divorce and what you are asking the court to do.  Texas offers several different types of divorce and you can read about those on our blog. At this stage, you can also request a temporary hearing to determine various issues that need to be decided while the divorce is pending as well as a temporary restraining order in regards to the parties behavior during the case. Many counties include a number of these temporary injunctions as part of […]

US Supreme Court Building

The Basics of Filing for Divorce in Texas

Going through divorce is a long and complicated process it doesn’t help that it happens to be one of the most emotional times of many people’s lives.  It is also a process that has been stigmatized for years.  As such, not everyone knows too much about the process. To help you better understand the process of divorce in Texas we have created this quick guide about filing for divorce. Mandatory Texas Residency Like with many states, Texas has a requirement for residency in order to file for divorce.  At least one party in the divorce must have resided in Texas for at least 6 months before filing. There is an additional requirement that you must have lived in your county for at least 90 days.  This prevents people from attempting to file from out of state using the Texas courts. Grounds For Divorce In most states, there are two different types of divorce that you can file for.  These are at fault and no-fault.  Texas is a mixed state, meaning that they will hear cases for both at fault and no-fault divorces. No-fault divorces are the most common cases that Texas courts hear.  It means that there is no blame […]

A Quick Guide to Divorce

Adultery and Alimony in Texas

Adultery is one of the factors behind couples filing for divorce in Texas. Married couples experiencing adultery are most likely to separate at some stage of their lives. In cases where adultery causes divorce of a couple, there is a strict need to define the rights and responsibilities of the parties involved, especially those pertaining to financial matters. One can file for divorce based on adultery in Texas. Adultery can affect the decision of financial issues in a Texas court such as alimony and property division. It is defined by Texas Law as having been deliberately involved in a sexual relationship with somebody who is not your spouse. While filing for a divorce resting on adultery, it is crucial to produce a proof of the affair, which could be anything from phone records and emails to photos and videos, in the court. Generally, courts in Texas grant alimony to the candidate who does not have enough financial resources to support himself/herself and whose ability to earn has been damaged during all those years of the marriage. Alimony is granted if: the spouse applying for alimony cannot earn because he/she has to look after a minor child or because he/she has […]

No fault divorce courtroom

No-Fault Divorces In Texas May Become Harder After New Bill

In Texas, a no-fault divorce is the default mechanism to request a divorce.  Officially by Texas law, a no-fault divorce is when there are conflicts between two parties that could not reasonably be overcome.  In reality, it is simply the type of divorce two people seek when they are looking to get out of a marriage, and serves as a mechanism to ending a marriage with the least amount of drama. It also provides an avenue for victims of abuse to leave a marriage without a burden of proving anything beyond that the marriage itself is unsustainable. State Representative Matt Krause is attempting to pass two bills in 2017.  The first bill increases the amount of time that two people must wait before a divorce is finalized.  This is in an attempt to get a couple to work out of their problems, instead of a divorce. The second bill that Rep. Matt Krause is putting forward will make it hard for all people to get a divorce.  This bill would make divorce only possible for criminal reasons such as abuse and adultery.  While Mr. Krause states he isn’t trying to deter people from getting divorces, he also says he hopes […]

CPS Parent Resource Guide

CPS Parent Resource Guide Part 14: Moving Forward

  How to Move Forward If Your Child Is Not Coming Home   First and foremost, remember that you are not alone in this matter. Losing a child is the hardest thing a parent could go through, whether you voluntarily agree to give up your parental rights, or you go to court and a judge sees fit to take away your parental rights.   It is vital to your mental health to find a support system of people that can help care for you and support you. You might feel as if you have failed as a parent and this can be hard to admit to someone else. Feel free to also reach out to your community religious leader if you are religious.   Additionally, take time to take care for yourself. Your physical health and mental health are related. You are mentally and emotionally stronger when you exercise, eat right, drink water, hang out with positive people, and avoid harmful relationships. If you can afford it, consider taking up counseling, and you can ask your CPS worker and/or lawyer for help in finding in a therapist and to see if CPS will pay for this support.   Remember that […]

CPS Parent Resource Guide

CPS Parent Resource Guide Part 13: Special Topics Part 3

Parents Who Are Undocumented Immigrants   The most important thing to remember is the CPS (child protective services) does not deport parents or their children. CPS is not an immigration agency of the United States. Children and their families are given the benefits, protection, and care of CPS whether or not they are here legally.   However, if a child who is not a U.S. citizen is brought into CPS custody, and is here illegally (undocumented), then the home country will be notified. This is a legal requirement and does not apply only when the child is a citizen of another country AND a U.S. citizen.   Be sure to always give accurate statements, as well as to cooperate with CPS as much as possible, in order to obtain all the benefits and protections that you are rightfully entitled to as an undocumented immigrant with CPS. Finally, remember that the CPS is not an immigration agency and cannot deport you or your child. Parents With Native American/Indian Heritage   The Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) is a federal law that protects the best interests of Indian children. If you know or think your child has some Native American/Indian heritage, tell […]

CPS Parent Resource Guide

CPS Parent Resource Guide Part 12: Visitation

The right to visit with your child will be one of the most important rights you have during a CPS (child protective services) case, and it is important to take advantage of the visitation that is allowed/ordered both from a bonding perspective as well as a legal one. Under current Texas law, CPS must arrange for you to visit with your child no later than five days after CPS is granted TMC. CPS should work with you to create a visitation schedule. This right can be limited if the court or the DFPS does not think it is in your child’s best interest to visit with you or if allowing visitation conflicts with another court order, such as a protective order. Visitation is important so your child can see you and it will also 1) help you become a better parent, and 2) Visitation can show CPS that you are working your services and making the changes needed to help you become a safer parent!   Supervised vs. Unsupervised Visitation   A judge can order visitation to be either supervised or unsupervised and order other limits as needed. For example, the judge may order where the visits will occur, who […]

A Quick Guide to Divorce

Divorce, Custody, and Visitation in Texas

Divorce, Custody, and Visitation in Texas: What You Need To Know Going through a divorce is hard business.  People from all around Texas and the rest of the country would agree with you on this.  It is easier though if you know what to expect.  Hopefully this can provide some information so that you can better know what to expect from a divorce, and what you need to know about custody and visitation in Texas. Divorce in Texas Divorce is the legal separation of a marriage.  In Texas divorce is also commonly referred to as the dissolution of marriage.  There are two different types of divorce: fault divorce and no-fault divorce.  Both of these types of divorce are fairly explanatory.  A fault divorce implies that one or both parties did something that would cause them to no longer want to be together.  A no-fault divorce is when both parties mutually decide that they no longer want to be together. The process of a divorce is one that is done through the court system.  In Texas, one of the parties seeking divorce will file a petition for divorce.  Typically, both parties hire lawyers and negotiated either in a courtroom or through arbitration.  […]

A Quick Guide to Divorce

A Quick Guide To Divorce

A Quick Guide To Divorce Those who have decided to get a divorce or who might be thinking about getting a divorce often wonder what the process is like.  Because of how common this question is, we have decided to create a quick guide for you in the form of a blog post.  We know that divorce can be difficult but we hope this makes it one step easier for you. A divorce is the legal process of ending your marriage.  State law dictates how a divorce is handled and while some states have slightly different laws, the process is relatively similar.  This guide will go based off a divorce in Texas but you could apply most of the information to a divorce in any state. One partner in a divorce must initiate the Petition for Divorce with a court.  The petition must then be served to the other partner.  If abuse is involved or there is fear of retaliation, a temporary restraining order may be issued.  The preferred method for divorce resolution is for the parties to mediate out any issues before court.  If mediation fails, anything remaining will be settled during a trial. In Texas, there are two […]

Divorce and Separation

Domestic Violence: Child Custody and Family Law

Domestic violence can have devastating effects on children. Batterers often use children to manipulate their partners. While the relationship continues, batterers may threaten to take custody of, kidnap or harm the children if the victim reports the abuse. After a battered woman leaves a relationship, batterers may use child custody disputes, visitation and joint custody arrangements as opportunities to threaten, intimidate, coerce and harm their former partners. From Kendall Segel-Evans, Wife Abuse and Child Custody and Visitation by the Abuser (1989). For a long time, domestic violence was not considered relevant to custody and visitation determinations. As explained in more detail in the Toolkit to End Violence Against Women, created by the National Advisory Council on Violence Against Women and the United States Department of Justice’s Violence Against Women Office, available in PDF and text formats, judges making custody determinations “routinely concluded that violence toward the other parent had nothing to do with one’s ability to adequately parent, and most court decisions revealed that judges did not believe that domestic or sexual abuse of one parent by the other fundamentally compromised the interests of the children.” As the Toolkit explains further, because of the ways in which batterers can use […]