Posts Tagged Austin Family Lawyer

Grandparent Adoptions

Grandparent Adoptions

Grandparents do not have automatic custody rights to their grandchildren – even if they are better fit caregivers than the biological parents. Grandparents who wish to legally establish their position as primary caregivers should consider a grandparent adoption or a grandparent custody order.

I assist grandparents who wish to adopt a grandchild. There may be many reasons for a grandparent to pursue an adoption, including:

  • Alcohol or substance abuse by parent(s)
  • Abandonment by parent(s)
  • Death of parent(s)
  • Mental health issues
  • Abuse of child by parent(s)

Another reason a grandparent may wish to adopt a grandchild is to stop interference by one or both biological parents. Once grandparents’ rights have been legally established, a grandparent has the same legal rights as a biological parent. If a biological parent tries to interfere, a grandparent now has legal recourse.

Call our firm now for a consultation: 512-931-4LAW (4529)

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Contested and Uncontested Divorces

Contested and Uncontested Divorces

Divorces may be contested or uncontested. An uncontested divorce is one in which the spouses agree to the divorce, agree to the child custody arrangement, agree to the division of the marital property and agree to the division of their liabilities. In an uncontested divorce, one party files the petition to initiate the process. Then the parties wait sixty (60) days, go to court, announce that the divorce is not contested, agree on child custody and the property division, and leave the courthouse divorced.

A contested divorce, however, is a different matter. Each party typically hires an attorney. Depending upon the nature and amount of the marital property and level of acrimony, the divorce usually will take substantially longer than sixty (60) days to finalize.

In a contested divorce, securing the appropriate temporary orders is critical. Temporary orders govern all aspects of the divorce proceeding between the date the petition is filed and the date the divorce is granted, such as spousal support, custody and support of the children, living arrangements of the children, visitation of the children, payment of bills, possession and use of the marital assets–including the family home–payment of attorney’s fees and other procedural matters. In some cases, a temporary restraining order (TRO) may be warranted to prevent harassment or prevent the sale or transfer of marital property.

Call our firm now for a consultation: 512-931-4LAW (4529)

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Establishing Paternity and Child Support in Texas

My law firm assists mothers and fathers in resolving paternity issues in Travis County and surrounding counties.

What is paternity? Paternity establishes the legal relationship between father and child. When a child is born to married parents, the husband is presumed to be the legal, biological father. When a child is born to unmarried parents, this legal relationship can only be established through court procedures.

When married parents divorce, establishing child support is a critical component to the divorce and child custody process. However, in the case of unmarried parents, where the legal father has not been established, it is necessary to establish paternity before orders can be entered involving child support, visitation or other child custody-related issues. In Texas, paternity can be established through:

  • Voluntary Acknowledgement of Parentage signed by both parents and filed with the court
  • A petition to the court to establish parentage. DNA test/paternity test results are reviewed by the court and parentage is established (or the paternity case is dismissed).

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