Adoption is a joyful and exciting experience for any family, but the legal process can be difficult to navigate. There are several steps to the adoption process in Texas, including background checks, home studies, and extensive reporting and documentation requirements. We have experience with both private and foster family adoptions, and we love guiding families through adoption to welcome new family members into a happy home.
Custody conflicts are usually the most emotional and difficult situations for clients to face. Each parent is concerned for the best interest of a child, but there is often a difference of opinion as to what “best interest” really means. Courts have the authority to modify custody of a child if there has been a material or substantial change in the circumstances of a child or a parent, including the growing and changing needs of a child as he or she ages. Custody cases can be volatile, and sometimes involve substance abuse issues, physical or emotional abuse, or neglect of a child. We can address your concerns in a custody case and help to enter a modified order that is appropriate for the needs of your child.
In Texas, the parent who does not have possession of the child is ordered to pay child support until a child turns 18 or graduates from high school, whichever occurs later. Courts take very seriously a parent’s obligation to financially support his or her children. Child support cases can help to establish child support, modify child support to ensure the proper amount is being paid, or in cases where child support is overdue, collect past support and ensure timeliness of future support payments. Child support is based on a percentage of the obligor parent’s income, and there are special circumstances that can affect the amount of support owed. We can offer you legal guidance to ensure the appropriate amount of child support is being paid.
Divorce is always a difficult decision and has a huge effect on spouses and children. The most complicated divorce cases involve both custody and property division issues, both of which can cause clients anxiety and frustration. When dealing with the end of a marriage, spouses each have strong feelings about what is in the children’s best interest, where the children should live, and what time the children should spend with each parent. Property division can be equally emotional, as spouses worry about how assets and liabilities will be divided, what resources they may or may not have post-divorce, and the impact the division will have on future major life events, such as the sale of a home, remarriage, or retirement. There are various factors that affect the way that property is divided and whether such division is considered equitable under Texas law. We can work with you to identify short and long terms goals to ensure that your needs and the needs of your children are met through the divorce process.
There are various ways for parties to settle the issues in their case that do not involve costly litigation.
Collaborative law is a legal process that allows couples to resolve their family law disputes without the expense and negative emotions that can occur in litigation. Couples work together with their collaborative attorneys and neutral professionals to achieve their specific parenting and financial goals for the benefit of the parties and their children. The process allows the parties to reach a fair settlement and preserve future co-parenting relationships. We are experienced in collaborative law and can work with you and other collaborative professionals to help your family attain a peaceful resolution.
We offer mediation services to attorneys and their clients to assist with conflict resolution in a confidential and efficient manner. We offer creative solutions, along with litigation knowledge and experience, to help guide parties through the negotiation process. Mediation affords parties the opportunity to craft a custom agreement that they could not otherwise achieve at the courthouse. Please contact us for mediation rates and scheduling.
While Texas law is clear regarding the characterization of separate and community property, couples often choose to enter into their own agreements to protect assets that may otherwise be subject to division in a divorce suit. A prenuptial (before marriage) or postnuptial (after marriage) agreement may be appropriate to ensure that you and your spouse can preserve your property in the event of a divorce. Drafting these agreements is a complicated process, since it is critical that they are written properly to be enforceable upon divorce. We are experienced in drafting prenuptial and postnuptial agreements so that your goals for protection of your property are met.
Kern Law, PLLC
605 Houston Street
Richmond, Texas 77469
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