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Fort Worth Family Law Blog

What's mine is not necessarily yours: Divorce and student loans

The unfortunate reality for many college graduates today is that when they walk across the stage to receive their handshake and diploma, they are not just receiving a lifetime of opportunities but also a mountain of debt.

Statistics from the Institute for College Access and Success show that college graduates in 2012 who took on debt to finance their education carried an average of $29,400 in student loans. The figures were even grimmer for those enrolled in graduate programs.

Fortunately, help managing student loans can come in the form of marriage, as both spouses may be earning salaries and, in turn, greatly expanding the pool of available resources to pay down the debt. Indeed, this holds true even if both spouses enter the marriage with otherwise sizeable educational debt.

What happens if spouses in these situations decide to pursue a divorce?

Tim Tebow says he may adopt someday

It seems that when a story makes headlines concerning adoption, the topic involves the complex legal issues that may cause a hiccup during the process. In other situations, a celebrity adoption may grab the attention of the media.

Tim Tebow may make grab headlines in a variety of areas. Dallas football fans have heard his name bandied about from time-to-time. But, last month, he made headlines after saying the he may consider adopting a child someday. ABC News reports that Tebow told a reporter from People Magazine in mid-March that, “There are so many kids out there who really need a family.”

When a court finalizes an adoption, the event can be one of the most joyous events to occur in a court proceeding. However, prior to finalizing an adoption, there may be other intricate legal issues to resolve.

Stock option plans may be involved in a Texas divorce

The topic of property division typically comes up when people discuss divorce. When high-profile stories hit the news, there may be discussions about multiple homes or other real estate issues that need to be addressed. Cars, jewelry and a host of items may issues that make the news. But, in many situations, one or both of the people heading to divorce court may have assets that are less tantalizing to the general public, but very important for the parties involved.

Many companies in Texas have programs available for employees that provide benefits such as an employee stock ownership plan, providing a vehicle for workers to have an opportunity to own a part of the business. Plans may be set up differently from company to company, and classifying the nature of an option can be complex.

Country singer Trace Adkins heading for divorce court

When a marriage breaks down before the kids have reached the age of majority, issues can be complex. When stories about divorce are covered in the news, the tales may often involve high-profile cases. The media may turn to the financials, covering who gets what asset. But, even in high-net worth divorce proceedings, when children are involved, the issues of child custody, visitation and child support can be emotional topics in the real world.

Sources say that Rhonda Adkins has filed for divorce from country singer Trace Adkins. While the divorce will not be decided under Texas law, the early reports may be helpful to our Fort Worth readers in understanding some of the kinds of issues that may be more universal than one might think.

Who claim's the kid's on income taxes after a Texas divorce?

When parents of a child seek a divorce in Texas, the issues can be complex and emotional. In many ways, the laws have become more flexible when it comes to child custody and visitation issues. People in Fort Worth may have hectic schedules, and that includes the schedules of children. Determining a workable parenting plan can be an important aspect of resolving issues in a divorce.

Notably, parenting plans and custody scheduling can vary widely from divorce-to-divorce. What may work in one situation may not be as beneficial in another. The amount of time kids spend with one parent might not always be an even split. When one parent has custody of the child for a greater amount of time (generally based upon the total number of nights the child resides in the parent’s home) in a given year, the federal government considers that parent the custodial parent for the purposes of the income tax dependency exemption laws.

Physicists find algorithm that makes better custody arrangements

Are you a divorced parent? Have you ever gotten frustrated by a child custody arrangement? If you answered yes to both of these questions then you’re not alone. A lot of parents here in Texas, as well as across the nation, experience the same frustration and often find it just as difficult to deal with as it is to find a solution. But a group of physicists believe they may have found relief from this frustration from the most unlikely of things.

After taking a look at his own custodial arrangement, one of the physicists wondered if there was a simpler way of aligning the visitation schedules between the family he had with his exes and the current family he has with his new girlfriend. Believing that he could apply a mathematical model to a complex societal problem, he asked some friends to help him. After analyzing a number of cases, researchers developed an algorithm that optimized visitation between divorced parents and minimized the number of unhappy couples.

Amidst violence in the Ukraine, American family adopts 4

Those who have gone through the adoption process will tell you that it can sometimes get complicated, even with domestic adoptions. But this process can get even more complicated when different nations get involved and also when adopting four children at the same time as well.

But as our Texas readers will see, this was the challenge one Alabama couple was willing to take on when they first made the decision to start their family. Unable to have children of their own, the couple realized that adoption may be their only remaining option. And after meeting a 16-year-old from the Ukraine in the summer of 2013, then later three more Ukrainian children who were all siblings, the couple knew they were ready for a family.

Appeals court rules in favor of transgender Texas woman

Although we recognize that some of our readers here in Forth Worth may not be comfortable with the topic of same-sex couples, we also recognize that some of our readers may be part of the LGBT group and may have questions about family law issues just like anyone else. But their situation is more complicated than most because Texas does not recognize same-sex marriage. And it’s something that is becoming more frequent as more states across the nation legalize same-sex marriage.

A case out of Corpus Christi, in which a transgender woman recently appealed a court’s decision to void her marriage, is highlighting the complexities we described above. The crux of the case is whether the woman is the legal beneficiary to her deceased husband’s death benefits. The woman’s mother-in-law and the husband’s ex-wife from a previous marriage claimed in a court filing that because the transgender woman had male sex organs at the time of her marriage, her union should be considered a same-sex marriage. If this was the case, should she be allowed to collect benefits upon her husband’s death?

Could a divorce have on affect on health insurance in 2014?

When it comes to major life events like marriage, divorce or death, people often have a lot of questions about how things will be impacted and whether they can prepare for it ahead of time. In cases of divorce, spouses often have a large chunk of time in order to deal with things like separating their assets, but what about the things that are not so easy to separate like health insurance? What affect can a divorce have on something like this?

Well, there are a couple things that our Texas readers should keep in mind when it comes to health insurance and their marriage. The first has to do with the Affordable Care Act. With the March 31 deadline for enrollment quickly approaching, some soon-to-be divorcees might be wondering how their separation will affect their coverage and whether they could be penalized for not having coverage. Although the program does afford protections to those who have undergone a life-changing event, such as divorce, this could get muddled because everyone might not be on the same page. For some, this might mean lengthy conversations with their providers and potential discussions with legal representation as well before it gets sorted out.

Abuse allegations lead to questions about adoption process

By now some of our readers here in Texas have probably already heard about the allegations against Woody Allen. One of his adopted daughters, who is now an adult, claims that Allen molested her. But while these allegations have never been confirmed by a court of law, they have raised questions about Allen’s parental qualifications, especially whether the allegation should have had an effect on his ability to adopt his two other daughters.

The truth of the matter is that criminal allegations are just that: allegations. They are claims made by someone against another person that must be proven in a court of law before a person is found guilty of any crimes. In most states, explains one expert, allegations are not taken into consideration during the adoption process because they oftentimes do not show up on the criminal background checks that so many agencies conduct.

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1201 East Belknap Street
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Fort Worth, TX 76102
Phone: 817-984-4610
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Fax: 817-334-0394
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