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What Are the Benefits of Common Law Marriage?

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Fort Worth family lawyerCommon law marriage is one of the easier ways to be considered married in Texas. There is no set time limit where you and your spouse must live together, you do not have to go through a wedding or marriage ceremony, and you can reap the benefits that a traditional married couple receives, including those benefits present during a divorce. A skilled lawyer with experience in common law and traditional marriage can help better explain both sides, the good and the bad.

What is Common Law Marriage?

Common law marriage is a way for couples to access the marital rights of a traditional married union without having to go through the ceremony generally associated with one. Both straight and gay couples can become officially married through a common law marriage in Texas. For a common law marriage to be made official, both parties must agree to be married to one another, live together as a married couple in Texas, and present themselves to others as married. You can present yourselves as married by acting as a married couple publicly. This can include:

  • Sharing bills that use the same last name of one spouse
  • Filing joint income taxes
  • Making joint purchases on things like vehicles or a house
  • Testimony of friends, family, and community attesting to your marital status

The key is to remain consistent in your display and not use marriage only when it appears beneficial to you. A court could easily decide not to acknowledge your common law marriage as legitimate if they find evidence that the benefits are being abused.


Fort Worth family lawyerTexas offers its citizens three main protective orders: temporary ex parte, final, and emergency protection. They vary from restraining orders because they are enforceable and provide more protection. A protective order is often used to protect individuals who have been or feel threatened by the possibility of domestic violence. A family law attorney can go over the protective order options for your particular case and petition for one to the court on your behalf.

What Does A Protective Order Do?

A protective order is one way the law can protect individuals from further harm. Though you may hear them often used interchangeably, they are different from restraining orders. Three other protection orders in Texas serve to help individuals gain legal protection for themselves and their family members from the act or threat of domestic violence.

Temporary Ex Parte Protective Order

This is a court-issued protective order to provide immediate protection from an alleged abuser. All family members living in the same household as the abuser are covered by this protection order. The abuser does not have to be present in the courtroom for the issuance of a temporary ex parte protective order. However, there must be clear and present evidence of the claims of domestic violence before a judge will issue one. The judge will use the information provided by the accuser to make a judgment on whether or not a protective order is necessary.


Most Common Reasons For Motorcycle Accidents

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Fort Worth personal injury lawyerMotorcycle accidents are a common occurrence in Texas. It occurs so often that, on average, one motorcyclist dies from a crash daily. There are many reasons and causes for motorcycle accidents, most of which involve another vehicle's negligence. Most vehicles are looking for other cars on the road and not motorcycles, which are often more challenging to see. If you have been injured in a motorcycle accident and seek compensation, contacting an experienced personal injury attorney is important.

Distracted Driving

A driver not paying attention to the road can often be a recipe for disaster. Drivers who text, eat, and shave while driving or pay more attention to their conversation with a passenger than the road can easily cause a motorcyclist to suffer an accident. Distracted driving using a handheld cell phone is illegal in Texas. However, it only carries a misdemeanor charge. It is up to passenger vehicle drivers to pay attention to motorcyclists on the road, and it is up to motorcyclists to be aware of passenger vehicle drivers who are driving distracted. 

Driving Under the Influence (DUI)

Drinking, drugs, and driving never mix well. Alcohol-related accidents are far too common and are responsible for many fatalities throughout the year. Driving under the influence makes it difficult to follow the road according to the law, let alone keep an eye out for other drivers, including motorcyclists. Motorcyclists should be on the lookout for irresponsible drivers and attempt to avoid them on the road if possible.


What Does Child Support Cover in Texas?

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Fort Worth family lawyer The custodial parent has little to no say in how much support they will receive from the non-custodial parent concerning child support payments. Child support is court-ordered and legally binding but does not say precisely what it has to be used for. Outside of a child’s basic needs being met, the non-custodial parent can use the payment for anything they see fit. Parents concerned with child support payments should speak to a skilled and experienced family law attorney for more information.

What is Child Support?

Child support is payments the non-custodial parent must pay to the custodial parent to cover their children’s basic needs. Its primary use is to cover the costs of raising a child. Child support typically lasts until the child reaches the age of 18 or graduates from high school. The amount ordered is non-negotiable, and failure to make child support payments carries a whole host of different penalties.

What Are The Basic Needs of the Child?

Minimum basic needs include:


Fort Worth divorce lawyerDivorce is a trying time for everyone involved. A contested divorce can be even more of an assault on the mental and emotional well-being of both parties. However, no one is more affected than children caught in the middle of a divorce battle. Both during and after divorce proceedings can be especially hard on children looking to cope with the inevitable changes. It is times such as these where an empathetic and compassionate attorney can come in clutch during the divorce process.


The shock of losing what was once normal, day-to-day life can be jarring to a child. It can become overwhelming to know that nothing will ever be the same, so a child will attempt to avoid thinking about what is happening and the grief associated. They ultimately fear reality so much that they choose to take comfort in lying to themselves that “everything will get better” or “nothing will change” to prevent the full impact of the situation. In their minds, separation and divorce are not options, and the issues the parents are facing are only temporary.


Unfamiliar territory, like a divorce, can cause a child to be fearful or angry. They may even feel both if they blame themselves for the outcome. In some situations, they will point their anger in other directions, such as toward one or both parents, other family, friends, or anyone with whom they choose to interact. Angry children may believe the divorce is unfair to them and begin to act out in frustration, anxiety, or irritation.

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