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Austin Texas Family Law Blog

Decree modifications may be necessary following divorce

Following the marital dissolution process in Texas, you may feel relieved to move on with your life. However, you and your ex-spouse may experience various life changes that will cause you to revisit your divorce decree. In such situations, you can pursue decree modifications in a Texas family law court.

As an example, perhaps you are making child support payments to your ex-spouse but end up losing your job. Because the loss of your job is deemed a substantial change, you can request that the court modify this aspect of your divorce decree. However, if your job loss is only temporary, the court likely will not reduce your child support obligations.

Insurance an important consideration during divorce

The end of a marriage in Texas is a complicated process due to the various financial, emotional and practical implications it has for both parties involved. For this reason, overlooking a basic item like insurance coverage can be easy during divorce proceedings. Still, it is important to examine how one's insurance coverages might change following the divorce and what needs to be done to prepare for this.

First, a law called COBRA is in place in part to help divorced individuals who are not earning income to remain under the employer health insurance plans of their ex-spouses for as many as three years following their divorce proceedings. This can be convenient for divorced individuals, though it is often not cost-effective. Fortunately, more practical insurance options for health care may be available and thus worth looking into, particularly since the Affordable Care Act was enacted in late 2017.

Child support amounts can be altered post divorce

Dissolving a marriage is not a simple, straightforward process, particularly when young children are going through the process, too. The reality is that every family is different, so naturally, families do not approach the issue of child custody exactly the same. Nonetheless, noncustodial parents are usually required to provide child support to custodial parents, as this allows both parents to share in the cost of supporting the children. Two facts are essential to consider when navigating the issue of child support during divorce in Texas.

First, it is possible to modify a child support amount that the court previously determined. This is because the paying spouse may suddenly become disabled and thus unable to continue working. In addition, a paying spouse might suddenly fall into financial trouble due to losing a job. Alternatively, a paying spouse may receive an inheritance or even boost his or her income substantially. These situations have an impact on the child support amount being paid.

Will I lose custody of my children because I’m in the military?

After your divorce, you might want to make the most of your time with your children. But you may worry about how being in the military can affect your custody agreement. You and your ex split time with your child—but what will you do if you have to move?

Serving in the military means there is always a chance that orders will send you to another state or even another country. Since the military can transfer or deploy you at any time, can a judge take away your custody?

Child custody: Tips for co-parenting

Although parents can separate for a myriad of reasons, the primary concern of both parents is usually the safety and well-being of their children. Working out a suitable child custody arrangement becomes a top priority when parents divorce. These days, more and more parents in Texas are choosing co-parenting. Co-parenting, or shared parenting, is an arrangement where separated parents assume equal responsibility in raising the children, like a partnership. Here are some helpful tips for divorced parents who are considering shared parenting.

It is vital to keep the marriage out of parenting. If there are unresolved issues from the marriage, never drag them into parenting the children. Instead, find friends or family to talk with or, better yet, a counselor. Set a good example for the kids, and always make their needs a top priority. The well-being of the children should always factor into any decision.

Cryptocurrency makes divorce more complicated

When two individuals decide to get divorced in Texas, they may naturally bicker over money. One form of money that may especially cause conflict during divorce in 2019 is cryptocurrency. This is because cryptocurrency has become increasingly popular throughout the United States within the past 24 months.

Bitcoin is around 10 years old. However, it became a mainstream concept in 2017 after its per-coin price increased to $20,000. About 5 percent of Americans carried cryptocurrency last year, but a survey showed that 21 percent of additional people would purchase this virtual currency if given the opportunity to do so.

Getting organized may make divorce process less stressful

A marital breakup is oftentimes a hard process from both an emotional and a logistical standpoint. However, one thing that a person can control is how prepared he or she is for the divorce proceedings. Here are a few steps that divorcing individuals can take to prepare effectively for their proceedings in Texas.

First, it may behoove those going through divorce to take inventory of several items early on. For instance, they can gather their balance sheets and financial statements, as well as their property deeds and their loan/mortgage documents. Other important items to collect include wills and trusts, statements for credit card accounts, and insurance policies.

Parent-child communication can help teens following divorce

The process of getting divorced in Texas can be difficult for the entire family, especially teen children. This is particularly the case if child custody is a sticking point for the two parents. However, research shows that, after divorce, the parents can maintain positive communication with their teen children, using communication methods such as FaceTime and texting.

In a recent study, researchers looked at data from about 400 divorced fathers and mothers with children in the age range of 10 to 18 years. They pinpointed three kinds of co-parenting relationships: conflictual, cooperative and moderately engaged. Then, they looked at what made the parents' relationships with the children different in these three situations.

Subpar education, religious differences contribute to divorce

Research shows that the divorce rate is decreasing throughout the United States, including Texas. However, divorce is still inevitable in many situations and for a variety of reasons. Here is a glimpse at a couple of factors that, according to researchers, are contributing to divorce today: inadequate premarital education and differences in religion.

A lack of premarital education combined with religious differences have been shown to contribute to more than 13 percent of divorces. In a recent survey, the couples who participated in a program aimed at teaching them conflict and resolution and communication skills felt that the training still was not adequate. Specifically, one couple mentioned that although premarital counseling does teach couples how to deal with conflict, it does not discuss the various phases that married people experience over time.

Frequently made mistakes may complicate child custody situation

Dealing with a divorce in Texas can often be an unpleasant experience. This is particularly true for those with minor children, as they may be at odds about how to handle child custody. Here are a couple of mistakes that spouses frequently make during divorce that can end up making a child custody situation more complicated for the entire family.

First, sometimes, divorcing spouses refer to their children as their own children, refusing to recognize the other party's role in rearing the children as well. It is true that, sometimes, parents who are getting divorced may no longer be in love with each other, and they might not completely agree with the other party's parenting decisions. However, the children still belong to both of them, so it is critical to approach a child custody decision with this mindset.

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