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TX divorce lawyerOnce you have finally made the decision to get divorced, you may feel like a weight has been lifted. But while deciding to get divorced may feel like the hardest part of the process, it is only the beginning. Now you need to look carefully at your situation and decide which divorce strategy you want to pursue. Each strategy has advantages and disadvantages, and an experienced Texas divorce attorney can help you explore your options. Here are the three most common divorce strategies in Texas.

Mediated Divorce

When couples use a neutral third-party mediator, each spouse still has their own attorney and gets to fight for the things they want out of their divorce. Choosing a mediator does not mean spouses will not get their needs met or their voices heard; rather, a mediator encourages couples to discuss their disagreements productively with the aim of achieving a compromise. Because mediation is more peaceful than courtroom litigation, children often benefit enormously from parents who divorce using mediation.

Collaborative Divorce

Collaborative divorce is somewhat similar to mediation in that its main aim is achieving a peaceful divorce decree that meets everyone’s needs. However, in a collaborative divorce, couples employ a team of professionals who are committed to cooperation - including the attorneys. Everybody works together to help the spouses make choices about property division, a parenting agreement, spousal support, and more. Other professionals, such as financial experts and child psychologists, can give advice and help couples reach an optimal resolution. Although collaborative divorce can involve more people, it can actually save money compared to a litigated divorce because it helps the overall process move much faster.

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TX divorce lawyerSmall businesses often do so much more than provide a family’s income. They also represent countless hours of labor, sleepless nights, and years of personal investment in a project that may not always have been guaranteed to be successful. If you own a small business in Texas and are facing the prospect of divorce, you probably have questions about what will happen to your business in the property division process.

Is My Spouse a Co-Owner in My Business?

Even if your spouse’s name is not on the business’s documents, if you did not protect your business with a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement, your spouse likely owns at least part of the business. Any business growth since your marriage, including income, asset ownership, or even goodwill, is probably community property and will be subject to division in a divorce.

Does a Divorce Mean My Business is Over?

Many couples have successfully navigated the issue of small business ownership in a divorce in a way that allows the business to continue and thrive. There are several ways to do this, but the three most common are:

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TX injury lawyerMotorcycle riders are at an increased risk of serious injury and death from accidents with other vehicles. Unprotected by the chassis of a car or truck and easily exposed to external hazards, accidents that would be minor for a passenger in a larger, enclosed vehicle can be far more dangerous on a motorcycle. While motorcycle riders have a reputation of engaging in risky behavior, the research shows that most motorcycle collisions actually happen when drivers of larger vehicles do not see motorcycles because they violate the motorcycle’s right of way. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident in Texas, it is essential to get help from a personal injury attorney who can help you understand how Texas law protects you.

Texas Law Allows You to Obtain Compensation For a Variety of Injuries

While most people know that personal injury victims may be able to obtain compensation for the physical injuries they have suffered, personal injury lawsuits can result in damages for a variety of other physical and nonphysical losses, including:

  • Past and future medical expenses
  • Motorcycle repairs or replacement
  • Lost wages
  • Lost earning capacity
  • Pain, suffering, distress, and anguish
  • Scarring and disfigurement
  • Lowered quality of life
  • Loss of companionship
  • Funeral expenses

Texas Law Can Protect You Even if You Were Partly at Fault

Sometimes an accident is caused because of dangerous or negligent actions from both the motorcyclist and the vehicle with which he or she collided. For example, if a crash happens when a motorcyclist is driving 10 miles per hour above the speed limit and a car turns left in front of the motorcycle because the driver fails to see the incoming bike, both parties may be at fault. But if less than 50% of the fault is yours, you can still bring a suit against the other responsible party.

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TXOne very common but unfortunate consequence of a Texas divorce is the severing of relationships between spouses and their in-laws. While the spouses themselves may not feel this is a bad thing, their children and the children’s grandparents are often negatively affected by the sudden disappearance of the time they spend together.

Grandparents play an important role in the love and nurturing of young children and when a sudden estrangement occurs, it can be heartbreaking for the grandparents and confusing and tragic for the children. If you are in this situation, there is hope - Texas recognizes that children often benefit from having a relationship with their grandparents, and, if it would be in the child’s best interests, it may be possible for grandparents to be awarded visitation with or even custody of their grandchild.

When Can I Get Visitation With My Grandchild?

Texas family courts are primarily concerned with understanding the child’s best interests and ensuring his or her family arrangements protect those interests. At times, this means courts will support a parent’s decision not to let the child visit with the grandparent. Other times, however, a sudden estrangement from a grandparent is sufficiently disruptive to the child’s life that visitation would clearly be in the child’s best interests.

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TX familiy lawyerAs children of divorced or never-married parents get older and gain a greater understanding of their relationship with their parents and the world around them, they often develop strong opinions about which parent they want to be with all or most of the time. When the parents agree with the child’s preferences and with each other on a parenting arrangement, making a new custody order is fairly simple.

But when parents disagree with each other about child visitation, or if a child has preferences with which one or both parents disagree, a Texas family court may have to intervene and decide what arrangement would be in the child’s best interests. If you are interested in pursuing sole custody (or sole conservatorship, as it is legally known), you may want the help of an experienced family lawyer who can help you explore your and your child’s options.

When Can a Child Decide Which Parent to Live With?

A child can never independently decide which parent they want to live with until they are 18. This may seem unfair, especially if the child is mature and independent, but that is the law. However, beginning at age 12, children can have a larger say in where they live - although a judge will be the person who ultimately makes a decision about, or approves of, parenting arrangements. Children also cannot decide to refuse visitation with one parent until they are 18 because, like parents, children are legally obligated to follow existing custody orders.

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