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Texas Family Law Questions & Answers

1 Answer | Asked in Adoption, Child Custody and Family Law for Texas on

Q: Can I get my rights back even though my daughter has been legally adopted for 15 years & I have raised her for 15 years.

My parents convinced me to relinquish my rights when I was 18. I stayed living with them to raise my daughter for 15 years. I am now married and living on my own and they will not allow my daughter to live with me. Is there anything I can do to get my daughter back with me?

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 24, 2019

You only mention that you relinquished your rights. Is it possible that your daughter was not formally "adopted"? If not, then you may have parental rights as they may not have even filed any documentation with the court. If they have formally adopted her then that will be a harder road to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Support for Texas on

Q: How to stop a childsuport increase

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Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 24, 2019

Gathering all of your evidence about your current income and how it has changed from the intial determination is where you should start. If it has changed substantially then you probably won't be able to stop any increases. In case you have had another child since the initial order be sure to... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: Terminating Parental Rights.

My sister has two children aged 5 and 3. My wife and I are wanting to take the 3 of them to Europe with us this Christmas, problem is finding the "father" to get the kids passports. The attorney general cannot find him to collect child support either. He hasn't seen or contacted the kids in 3 years... Read more »

Elaine Brown answered on Jun 23, 2019

It is difficult to terminate parental rights without abuse grounds or a voluntary termination by the parent. It may be done but it is often an expensive process. I would suggest talking with your sister to see how she feels about a termination action. The next step would be to find a family law... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Litigation, Family Law and Child Support for Texas on

Q: I’m being sued for back child support. I reconciled with my ex and we were common law spouses. We lived together.

So we had the same address and I always carried my daughter on my insurance. She never asked for support until I stopped paying a loan for her. I gave her support every month through my bank. I live in Texas.

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 23, 2019

You should defend yourself considering these facts. Possible offsets for child support.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Texas on

Q: Can Georgia peace officers enforce a TX visitation order?

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 20, 2019

Judges issue orders for enforcement. Police officers just follow directions from judges. Not sure of all your facts. All I can say is that if you are under any order of a court that it should be followed or modified if is no longer working.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Child Custody and Child Support for Texas on

Q: I live in Texas with my kids, my kids father filed an allocation of rights from colorado, how do i respond?

I moved in November 2018 to TX, He still resides in Colorado. He filed this allocation of parental rights in Colorado. And, not knowing if I am an actual Texas resident after 7 months, how do igo about responding to this? do i have to file with Colorado? or does Colorado courts not have any rights... Read more »

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 17, 2019

It will depend on when the children were moved and when the actual filing was made. Consult a Colorado attorney if case is pending there to respond. In general, the jurisidiction of the court is the one where the child has resided 6 months prior to the filing. After discussing this with a... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Civil Rights, Family Law and Real Estate Law for Texas on

Q: How do I get an ex bf to leave my house? Everything under my name.

When we broke up years ago(when my oldest was about 2- now 6) I put him on child support. I bought this house(2015), his name is not on anything and does not pay. He claims because he pays child support he pays “rent” to live here. (95% if not more of child support goes to daycare) Therefore,... Read more »

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 16, 2019

You need to file for divorce and request a temporary hearing. There you can discuss the issues that you have. If you were married when you purchased the home then it is legally his as well. That date was not provided. Your best bet it to get a divorce attorney to assist you. Let us know if we... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Texas on

Q: Can the final divorce decree be reversed in Texas if both parties want to reconcile?

After the the divorce has finalized and the final divorce decree signed by the judge, could it be reversed

if the parties want reconciliation?

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 15, 2019

You’ll have to get married again. Good luck.

1 Answer | Asked in Domestic Violence, Divorce, Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: Can you get a no contact order if your spouse is in a different state?

Kiele Linroth Pace answered on Jun 14, 2019

Yes, threats of imminent violence can be the basis for a Family Violence protective order. Such threats do not even have to be imminent to be the basis for a Stalking protective order. Committing the offense of Harassment on multiple occasions can also be the basis of a Stalking protective order.... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce and Family Law for Texas on

Q: I have the following question regarding the Common Law Marriage in Texas and please provide me with the case law.

Could someone please clarify the following Texas Family Code - FAM § 2.401. Proof of Informal Marriage ?

(2) the man and woman agreed to be married and after the (agreement) they lived together in this state as husband and wife and there represented to others that they were married.... Read more »

Robert Allen Thornton answered on Jun 13, 2019

Two people can enter into a written agreement to be married. This, of course, would be conclusive, that is to say, would leave no doubt. Other than that, the agreement can be verbal. But, there does not have to be an actual formal conversation. To prove a common law marriage using this statute,... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Divorce, Family Law and Domestic Violence for Texas on

Q: I want to take my child with me out of state to my hometown. Husband physically & mentally abused me in the past

I want to take my child with me out of state to my hometown. Husband physically & mentally abused me, and is a veteran with PTSD. I’ve recently made the mistake of turning to narcotics to cope w/the situation & now I’m worried he has better leverage than me. He just broke my phone & physically... Read more »

Kiele Linroth Pace answered on Jun 7, 2019

Even if you were currently having an affair that would not be a legal justification for a physical assault. You could contact the District Attorney's office in your county of residence and ask how to apply for a Family Violence Protective Order on the basis of the physical assault. You can also... Read more »

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law, Adoption and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: Could I lose rights to my kids just because my mother has had my kids for the last 6years?

My mother is trying to adopt my kids. I told her I was not willing to let her adopt them. And ever since I disagreed with her and her wife, she will no longer allowed me to see them , talk to them , or have any sort of contact whatsoever. She has broken the court several times. nd has lied to me... Read more »

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on Jun 6, 2019

You need to bring court action. It sounds as though there is an order in place. You have valid rights. If you do nothing then she will argue that you have abandoned them and could possibly succeed on an adoption.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law for Texas on

Q: Do you need an attorney to file for adult guardianship in Texas

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on May 24, 2019

It would be best as the laws regarding guardianship can frustrating to those unfamiliar with them. Good luck.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: How do I get guarding ship from my ex husband while my daughter in prison

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on May 24, 2019

It really depends on what your objectives are. A review of your order and more details are needed to assess this situation.

1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody, Child Support and Family Law for Texas on

Q: I am the custodial parent and The wife of the my child’s father is becoming hostile.

She yelled, cursed and approached my with confrontation when picking up my child this past Friday. She even called the police on me lying. She also mentioned to me she was trying to build a “case” against me. I don’t know what that means but I no longer want her involved with the pick up and... Read more »

Victoria Collins answered on May 20, 2019

Whether or not the child's step-mother (or any responsible adult) is allowed to pick-up or drop off should be addressed in your final decree. If it is not, or there is simply not language there does not appear here that there is enough of a substantial change in circumstances that would allow a... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Criminal Law, Divorce and Family Law for Texas on

Q: Is there a specific time frame for a protective order to be processed, and granted?

I filed a protective order against my husband almost 2 months ago. Every time I call the courthouse to check on the status "the lady" never returns my call. My last conversation with "the lady" 3 weeks, she stated she triage the PO and she's the only one, so it may take some time. I need to know my... Read more »

Matthew Valley answered on May 18, 2019

From the Texas Family Code:

Sec. 84.001. TIME SET FOR HEARING. (a) On the filing of an application for a protective order, the court shall set a date and time for the hearing unless a later date is requested by the applicant. Except as provided by Section 84.002, the court may not set a...
Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Child Custody and Family Law for Texas on

Q: Can my stepsons mother take him to rehab with her if she has a pending child endangerment charge?

My stepsons mother is currently on probation for felony number eight. In March she caught felonies nine, ten, and eleven. One of these felonies is Child Endangerment. CPS is involved but there is also a custody order from almost 3 years ago stating that she is the custodial parent. She is now... Read more »

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on May 18, 2019

Read your last signed order concerning rights and visitation. Your order may be sufficient to cover your situation. CPS’s job does not cover asserting parental rights.

1 Answer | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: I haven't seen my son in a year because his dad has kept him from me. I am in desperate need of help.

2018 cps was called but the case got closed. I was scheduled 2 visitions and he didnt show up to either one and the cps lady said there was nothing she could do. Everything has been in his hands and he threatened my son all the time. He lied since day one of court and he still won. Got me drug... Read more »

Rahlita D. Thornton answered on May 18, 2019

Your post just tugged at my heartstrings. Parents who do this hurt their own kids. I couldn’t imagine not being able to see a child of mine for over 1 month let alone 1 year. CPS can not assert your rights. You have to do that. You can file motions and actions to get this resolved. If court... Read more »

2 Answers | Asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Texas on

Q: My ex wants to back out on our mutual agreed change to standard visitation for this weekend. Can she on short notice?tx

Elaine Brown answered on May 17, 2019

Generally, when parents agree to visitation outside of the Court ordered visitation schedule, they can back out of the agreement without consequences from the Court. This can be frustrating to the other parent. However, it is difficult to enforce any schedules outside of those ordered by the... Read more »

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1 Answer | Asked in Domestic Violence, Divorce and Family Law for Texas on

Q: I filed a protective order against my husband in my county a month ago and still no status.

My husband and I live together and I'm afraid of filing for a divorce without the protection order in place. What are my options?

Kiele Linroth Pace answered on May 17, 2019

Your husband will know as soon as he is served with the protective order papers. If the prosecutor's office is too slow, you could always pay your divorce attorney to seek the protective order instead. A private attorney CAN do it, its just that most people rely on the prosecutor's office because... Read more »

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