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Family Law Archives

Structuring a sound child custody agreement helps everyone

As some Texans know, child custody may be an emotionally charged issue. While there are some cases in Texas in which parents are able to decide what is best for their child and arrive at an agreement on their own, there are also instances in which the court must step in and decide in the best interests of the child. Understanding child custody might make it easier to proceed.

Financial planning important when going through divorce

Texas couples who are thinking about divorce may know that it has a significant impact on finances. This is particularly true in that segment of the population over 50. U.S. divorce rates in the twenty years preceding 2010 remained essentially unchanged, but the divorce rate in those 50 and older has doubled.

Inaccurate birth date records affect many adopted children

Some Texas residents may be familiar with the issues surrounding inaccurate birth dates in adoption cases. If a child whose true birth date differs from their reported one, he or she may encounter improper school placement and perhaps an inability to verify their identity. According to one adoptive parent, the problem seems particularly notable for children born in Russia or China.

More alimony for ex-husbands

An evolving dynamic in society may be affecting divorces of Texas couples. Lawyers practicing family law have noticed a recent increase in the number of men asking for alimony in divorce hearings. Women earning more than their male spouses is becoming a more prominent trend throughout the entire country. he most recent data from the Census Bureau indicates that of those people receiving alimony payments in 2010, men only accounted for three percent of this total. This could be changing. According to a survey conducted by the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers in 2012, 47 percent of the respondents indicated that they had noticed among their own clients an increase in how many women now pay spousal support. This trend is likely to continue as women earn more in the workplace. The CEO of a financial planning firm for divorcees recalls waiting three years in at the start of his career to see a woman making alimony payments. His financial planning firm has now had seven cases with women paying spousal support in 2013. Many people are still resistant to accept this new dynamic because it clashes with conventional attitudes developed throughout society. Some judges remain skeptical of men asking for alimony, and men are generally less committed to these claims than women are. Some lawyers have been successful helping men without children receive alimony payments as well. Spousal support is often a key issue during a divorce proceeding, and it can sometimes be a contentious one as well. While the Supreme Court has ruled that the determination of an alimony award has to be made on a gender-neutral basis, it may take some time before men are comfortable in requesting it.

Texas Supreme Court debates allowing same-sex divorce

The Texas Supreme Court has not yet come to a decision about whether to allow same-sex divorce in the state. According to reports, it could take months for the court to reach a decision on the family law matter. The question arose when two same-sex couples sought divorces in Texas after being married in Massachusetts. Texas state policy does not recognize same-sex marriage.

Divorce and taxes

Divorce is new territory when it comes to filing taxes. There are many questions that need to be answered, including which spouse is claiming the kids as a deduction and whether or not spousal support is taxable. This subject might be of special interest to Texas readers because Texas is a community property state.

Alimony for Husbands

Couples in Texas may be surprised to learn that one disadvantage to women achieving higher earnings is that they may be ordered by a court to pay alimony to their former husbands if they divorce. This phenomenon is part of a larger trend that is known as the degenderization of marriage. As society does away with assumptions about the roles in society of men and women, it also rejects the traditional gender roles held within marriage.

Living together without being married?

At some point in their lives, almost half of adults in the United States have lived with a partner in a romantic relationship without being married. A 2012 study in revealed that one in 15 couples were in live-in relationships. The legal ramifications of not having a legal marriage are a growing part of family law.

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