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Kick Out Orders: Temporary Exclusive Occupancy of the Residence
“Kick out orders”, as most family law attorneys call them, are not necessary in most of divorce and family law matters because one of the parties usually decides to leave the residence and find a place to stay on their own temporary or further basis. That said, there are some people who dig their heels in and refuse to leave, regardless of whatever may be happening. In some cases, you need the court to intervene.
Divorce, child support and taxes
Your divorce attorney and tax professional should be able to work together to answer your questions and provide the best advice to limit your tax burden and maximize tax savings.
Interference with child custody
While some cases are dire and do require police and the intervention of the criminal courts, some people may use the threat of police and criminal action to provoke and intimidate the other parent. Judges can see right through phony pleas for criminal intervention in family matters, and people who abuse the law and court systems for personal gain may later regret their choices.
What is common law marriage in Texas?
Texas couples with informal marriages may petition to divorce the same way they would had the marriage been traditionally formalized with a ceremony and completed marriage license submitted to the Dallas County Clerk. In the petition for divorce a valid marriage must be alleged along with grounds for the divorce. This is another reason many couples register their informal marriage to prove its validity in divorce.
Finding hidden assets in divorce
Almost every experienced Dallas divorce lawyer has answered their client’s questions about the missing money and hidden assets in their divorce. When the parties exchange and review discovery and financial disclosures it is common for one to say the other is not listing and identifying all the money. Where are they hiding it?
Custody Order: Suit Affecting Parent Child Relationship (SAPCR)
When two people are not married, they need a custody order to address the needs of a child, they must file what is called a Suit Affecting Parent Child Relationship (SAPCR). Without court orders people may get along well and share responsibilities to the child and its best interests. At some point the couple may no longer agree about children’s’ issues and child rearing
Mark Scroggins recommends people hire the best divorce lawyer
In an ideal scenario you and your divorce lawyer should be able to identify the results you seek and candidly reach and understanding about what it may take to get there. Results-driven strategy may involve experts and layers of steps. The best lawyers are often those who are the best communicators with their clients and those who are skilled in helping clients set and manage expectations, while reducing surprises.
Post-holiday divorce, a Texas family law podcast
Podcast topics: Why do people get divorced? Finding a board certified Dallas divorce lawyer who you trust; Why is January a good month to file for divorce? Planning your year during a divorce; Interim attorneys fees; Spousal maintenance.
January is a popular month for divorce
When you file your divorce in January, the first holiday you must brace for is Valentine’s Day. The day afterwards, things may be looking better, and nice weather is on the way.
Divorce mediation: benefits and limitations
Divorce mediation has many benefits for those who chose mediation to resolve conflict in divorce and family law cases. Some people have concerns about feeling limited by the mediation process.
Ready for divorce, now what?
If you have been considering turning the page to a new chapter in your life and getting divorced from someone you no longer love or can live with in a marriage, there are several issues to consider as you take those first steps in preparing to hire a divorce lawyer and get the ball rolling.
Divorce filing and attempted murder-suicide in Texas
A tragic murder-suicide attempt was breaking news in Montgomery County, Texas, north of Houston. Rachel Butler was 26 years old and recently moved into a new home with her husband, Jason Butler, age 39. Police say Rachel called law enforcement and reported Jason shot her.
Empty nesters and divorce
While some divorces arise out of specific high-conflict situations, others are more amicable and a function of time and need to move to the next chapter in life. There are a few common trends in empty nester divorces of able spouses on different paths.
Teaching children about the history of Halloween
While many people’s children dress up in costumes and trick or treat door to door, others enjoy harvest festivals with all the fall trimmings and fun activities like corn mazes and bobbing for apples.
Divorce Podcast: Domestic Violence Awareness Month and Co-Parenting Issues
Topics: About National Domestic Violence Awareness month and activities; Reporting domestic violence and responding to complaints of abuse; Co-parenting issues involving dispensing of prescription medications; and Performance problems in school and how to co-parent on the same page.
When co-parents fail to dispense medication during visitation
When the future of co-parenting with a difficult person is uncertain, it is always a good idea to make good records and keep notes in a diary about visitations, medications and similar concerns because those notes may be necessary later.
Liability of parents for conduct of their child
Seeking the advice and representation by an experienced family law attorney is important, especially when you might become liable for the conduct of your child.
Mark Scroggins Selected to 2017 Texas Super Lawyers
Mark Scroggins stated, “I am thrilled to be recognized by Super Lawyers in family law again this year. Recognition by your peers as being one of the best in your practice area is certainly an honor. It also reaffirms that people know I get results for my clients.”
When do private legal investigators get involved in divorce cases?
The answer to the question, “Do I need to hire a private legal investigator,” is often, “It depends.” From serving another avoiding service of the petition and citation, to discovering hidden assets and property, there are many times a private legal investigator can be an asset in a divorce or family law case.
Enforcement of court ordered child support obligations
Whether you are the custodial parent to whom money is owed or the obligor facing stiff penalties for non-payment, the more you are willing to participate in fixing the situation, the more likely a positive resolution can be reached that helps everyone involved, especially the children who rely on the payment of child support to help sustain their needs.
Divorce Podcast: Being aware of family violence and protective orders
Podcast topics: Warning signs you and others might detect before it’s too late; Obtaining a protective order and the force and effect of the court’s order; Access to money and a support system if you must leave your spouse; Social media, technology and pitfalls in protecting your privacy and safety.
Post-divorce vacations: Another bright light at the end of the tunnel
At the end of the day, whether you plan a big blow out trip of a lifetime or take a weekend to yourself to relax and reflect, you will thank yourself.
Avoiding wealth management mistakes in marriage and divorce
Where there are future income and tax consequences for financial decisions in divorce, the experience and advice of legal counsel can help couples prevent loss and waste of money and opportunity. In this article, we highlight a few of the common mistakes couples can avoid, both in marriage and divorce.
What can you do if you worry your spouse may be hiding money?
Sometimes people hide smaller amounts of “emergency” money, “just in case.” Unfortunately for some, what begins as innocent can get out of hand and the wrong turn of events in a marriage can lead to the theft and wasting of marital money, often in a spiteful and devious manner.
Sending your kid to summer camp? Texas summer camps offer a variety of features and activities.
Among the top-ranked summer camps in Texas, there is a culture of building traditions and summer families among the kids who go to camp every year.
Divorce Podcast: Children used as witnesses in divorce and family law cases
Podcast Topics: What subject matter appropriately requires child eye witness testimony; Age and maturity as factors influencing whether to put children on the stand; Inherent credibility issues, especially among younger children asked to testify; Alternatives to traditional in-court testimony to incorporate children’s testimony.
Witnesses in divorce and family law cases
Often in the discovery phase of litigation, witnesses are identified and interviewed by attorneys seeking to find out whether the individual may be helpful in proving factual allegations. While it may seem appropriate to build an army of witnesses, an experienced family law attorney knows how to identify strategic witnesses and when to incorporate them in the process.
Defining college expenses in marital settlement agreements
If the future payment of college expenses is ripe for negotiation, it is important to prepare an agreement with certain terms to limit imagination and state specifically what defines college expenses.
Divorce Podcast: An amicus attorney and an attorney ad litem
Podcast highlights: When does is an amicus attorney or an attorney ad litem become involved in a family case? What are the various duties and functions of amicus attorneys and attorneys ad litem? How are amicus attorneys and attorneys ad litem selected and discharged? What to expect when an amicus attorney or an attorney ad litem is involved in your case?
Appeals in divorce and family cases
The decision whether to file an appeal may be difficult to make and there may be several factors to be considered. This article offers a few points of information on divorce and family law appeals.
Talking about summer parenting schedules early, being prepared for the end of the school year
If you know or believe there is going to be a schedule conflict, it is important to address the conflict early. There are several different options and schedule combinations that can satisfy everyone’s schedule concerns.
Divorce Podcast: Protecting your privacy during divorce
What information may become public record in traditional divorce litigation? Taking steps to protect your online privacy and what to do with social media. Can information be sealed or redacted to prevent privacy breaches and identity theft? What can be done to protect your privacy in out-of-court settlement negotiations?
The story of the surprise visit by a CPS caseworker
Before you do anything, start taking notes of everything that happens immediately following your initial contact with CPS. Note names, times, dates and subjects of any conversation. Call an experienced family law attorney who understands the CPS system and can assist you in the process.
How Will A Personal Injury Award Affect My Alimony Payment?
As part of the divorce agreement, you may be required to pay alimony to your spouse. The amount of the alimony payments is determined in large part by how much money you make versus your cost of living. Another factor that’s considered is the amount of income or other financial resources already at your former husband or wife's disposal.
Grandparent visitation and custody in Texas
While the traditional grandparent role may hold true for some, for many other families, grandparents are immediate and direct caregivers, supervisors and role models with visitation and custody rights.
Divorce Podcast: Court ordered child custody evaluations and mental examinations in Texas
Topics: Under what circumstances may a court order a child custody evaluation? When can a child custody evaluator recommend a mental examination of one of the parties? What can parents expect to encounter during the custody evaluation process? Are there options to challenge adverse findings of a child custody evaluator or mental examiner?
Divorcing your emotion from your divorce case
When you are ready to file for divorce or you get served with a petition for divorce there are important decisions to make. Initially, many people must figure out where they are going to be living during the divorce and who is going to be responsible for bills, childcare, and general decision making. While many arrangements are temporarily determined at the Temporary Orders Hearing, some decisions will need to be made immediately.
Divorce Podcast: The value of homemaker contributions in marriage and divorce
The value of homemaker contributions in marriage and divorce: The value of non-economic contributions by a homemaker parent; What happens in a divorce when one of the spouse has no income? Determining a homemaker contribution to value in a business or education; Planning to maintain a home for children as a homemaker after divorce.
Study suggests infants and toddlers benefit from frequent overnight time with fathers
A new study addresses previous findings and data suggesting that very young children benefit in both their relationships with their mothers and fathers when overnights with noncustodial fathers are frequent.
Co-parenting: Working together in the best interest of the children
Keeping focused on the children and their best interests is helpful when navigating difficult waters. The benefits of co-parenting are good for the parents and the children. A stable, and reasonably predictable environment may put children and their parents at ease. Being strong but reasonable is worth it and someday your children may thank you.
Why do people get divorced?
The decision to leave or fight to save a marriage may not be your own. Every individual and couple may respond differently to a variety of reasons for divorce. This article offers a list of seven common reasons people decide to end a marriage and move forward in life.
Divorce Podcast: It’s been your last holiday with your former beloved, now what?
Topics: The holiday might have not gone the way you expected, despite best efforts; How much do you know about divorce and what are your expectations? Preparing your financial information and records for review by your attorney; Deciding preliminary issues of financial support, housing and childcare; and What to expect in a divorce or family law case and how long it may take.
Remarriage, cohabitation and terminating spousal maintenance in Texas
New relationships and marriages can affect your right to continue receiving spousal maintenance, also called alimony, in Texas. The purpose for spousal maintenance is to provide periodic payments from the future income of one spouse for the support of the other spouse.
PODCAST: Preserving your share of assets and sanity, especially during holidays
Topics: Making decisions about attending holiday parties during a divorce; How to prepare your kids when you don’t know what others might say; Finding out your spouse has been spending money on someone else; The process for reconstructing the marital estate after wasting assets.
Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship in Texas, a SAPCR overview
A parent or another authorized person, may file a Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship (SAPCR) to ask the court to order custody, visitation, child support and for medical support. The parent or authorized person must have standing to file a SAPCR. The best interests of the child are the priority of the court. The complexity and time to complete a SAPCR is unique to each individual cause.
Electronic data, devices and divorce
Despite the best efforts of people to hide information or cover their tracks, there are ways to uncover electronic data. Copies of data remain in existence on a computer even though files and emails are deleted by the user. Texts and social media content may remain in others screen shots and saved for later disclosure in many divorce cases.
PODCAST: October is National Domestic Violence Month, with Mark Scroggins
What is domestic violence and how do you know if you or someone is in trouble? Learn about advanced domestic violence training and awareness. Listen to what happens in divorce when domestic violence is reported? we also talk about protective orders and procedures to help victims of domestic violence.
Common law marriage and divorce in Texas
When, for all intents and purposes, a couple appears to be married, despite never having a wedding, they are likely informally married. There are statutory elements determining the existence of a common law marriage. People in common law marriages have the rights of married people and when they want to divorce, the traditional divorce laws apply.
Domestic and international travel with children during divorce
Whether the other parent wishes to take the child on a trip to visit relatives in South Carolina or Spain, the details and requirements for travel outside of Texas can be negotiated and reduced to writing in agreement between the parents.
Considering children reacting to divorce
Giving children the freedom to cope in their own way is important to their mental health. Not knowing what life is going to be like after the divorce can challenge everyone.
PODCAST: The pitfalls of infidelity and repercussions in divorce, with Mark Scroggins
Divorce Podcast: There are many legal issues in divorce cases when spouses cheat. One may be the wasting of community assets of the marriage. Child custody determinations may also weigh on the judgment and credibility of a spouse engaged in an extramarital affair.
Texas premarital agreements: safeguarding individual interests
Setting aside the portrayal of premarital agreements in the movies, there are very pragmatic reasons to use a premarital agreement. In cases where a spouse is marrying and has children and assets from a prior marriage, preserving the property for the benefit of the named children, is possible with premarital agreements.
Considerations for parents divorcing and asking questions about teachers and schools
While there can be a seemingly infinite number of challenges facing divorcing parents with school-aged children, properly managing expectations and communication with the children, their teachers, and school administrators, can help prevent problems and direct attention to where it is needed.
Mark Scroggins, Selected to 2016 Texas Super Lawyers
Mark Scroggins stated, “We are thrilled to be recognized as Super Lawyers in family law again this year. To be recognized by your peers as being one of the best in your field is always gratifying. More importantly, it reaffirms that We are getting results for our clients.”
Preserving the integrity of college savings plans in divorce
There are several methods and places to save college funds to ensure their growth and survival for their intended beneficiaries, your children. When we draft divorce property settlement and separation agreements, there are important provisions included to protect and preserve the integrity of college savings plans.
PODCAST: Creative Custody and Possession Schedules in Texas, with Mark Scroggins
This program features Texas Board Certified family law attorney Mark Scroggins who shares information about creative child custody and possession schedules.
Standing to sue for child support: A recent decision involving an adult child with disabilities
Despite mother’s arguments, the appellate court held that Texas law confers standing on a custodial parent or guardian at the time they file the suit, not after a child reaches the age of majority and otherwise does not have a custodial parent or guardian.
Traditional divorce litigation with collaborative elements, a best of both worlds
There are alternative dispute resolution elements of collaborative divorce that can be beneficial when used in traditional litigation. So long as the parties agree to mediating certain elements of the divorce, the neutral professionals and round table meetings can lead to resolution of many issues. Resolving issues out of court helps isolate the strongly contested matters to be addressed in court.
PODCAST: How to prepare for divorce and why people file in August, with Mark Scroggins
Late summer is a very popular time to file for divorce, when kids are going back to school. Learn how to prepare for a divorce case, even before you see your divorce attorney. Managing things proactively allows you to maintain control. Be aware of social media risks, and how posting the wrong things during a divorce can hurt you. Late summer divorce filings may lead to temporary orders being set before the holidays depending on your situation.
If you could, would you pay spousal maintenance in one lump sum and move on with life?
There are several reasons an individual may appreciate the option to pay the other spouse maintenance in full instead of making monthly payments for years. The peace of mind of being completely done interacting with or thinking about your soon to be ex-spouse may be worth paying all the maintenance in one payment and being able to move on with life.
7 fun things to do with your kids in DFW this weekend
In less than a month children in Texas will be back to school. There are only a few remaining weekends to get out of the house and spend some quality time with your children. Especially if this is your summer visitation month with one of your kids, creating memories now will mean much to you and them later in life.
Texas grandparent custody in matters involving child abuse and neglect
When do grandparents have standing to seek custody of minor children? Read about one grandmother’s award of sole (custody) managing conservatorship. The court commented on the legal arguments regarding the issue of whether grandmother qualified for legal standing under the Texas Family Code provision on which she based her lawsuit.
5 recent Dallas divorce and family law podcasts on popular topics with Mark Scroggins
The best divorce and family law clients are the ones who understand the procedures involved and know what to expect in a variety of situations. In this monthly podcast series launched earlier this year, Board Certified Family Law Attorney, Mark Scroggins, of Scroggins Family Law, leads us through the nuts and bolts of some very common issues arising in divorce and family law cases.
PODCAST: Temporary Restraining Orders for People and Property with Mark Scroggins
Posted By Scroggins Family Law || 22-June-2016 -- Protecting children and adults from harassment, threats and injury. Preserving financial assets and property from damage, encumbrance and sale...
Proactive parenting: Examples in co-parenting promoting communication, trust and stability
Posted By Scroggins Family Law || 20-June-2016 -- Being proactively involved in your child's academics, emotional growth, extracurricular activities, health and spiritual well-being fosters communication, trust and stability...
The benefits of prenuptial agreements and the peace of mind they offer a marriage
PODCAST: Getting back to normal after a divorce or family law matter with Mark Scroggins
Dating violence is family violence, obtaining protective orders
International family law issues of expatriate Texans and foreign nationals divorcing in Texas
PODCAST: Temporary Orders Hearings in Texas Divorce and Family Law with Mark Scroggins
Shared parenting agreements and laws, increasingly popular, reducing parental alienation
Visitation orders, issues and pitfalls in Texas family law
Why is Child Protective Services at my door, and what should I do?
High net worth divorce and family law cases in Texas
Stay Connected with Scroggins Family Law
Business owner interest valuation and division in divorce
Podcast: Alcohol and drug use or abuse in Texas divorce and family law with Mark Scroggins
Temporary Orders Hearings in Texas: What to expect and how to prepare
Spousal maintenance in Texas: Qualification, maximum limits and factors
Best interests of the child: Courts consider several factors in custody cases
Drug and alcohol use or abuse in Texas divorce and family law
Social media and communication technology in divorce with family law attorney Mark Scroggins
Young children do not understand divorce; focusing on fears
Valentine's Day and Divorce: Why is February such an active month in divorce?
Do's & Don'ts in a High Net-Worth Divorce
Basic Facts About Divorce in Texas
Attorney and Mark L. Scroggins Selected for Texas Super Lawyers® 2015
Attorney Scroggins Selected for AIOFLA's 2015 Client Satisfaction Honor
Attorney Mark L. Scroggins Selected for the NADC 2015 "Top One Percent" List
U.S. Supreme Court Legalizes Same-Sex Marriage
THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF DISTINGUISHED COUNSEL