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TEXAS CITY LAWYER
LeGrand Law Office
2206 Palmer Hwy.
Texas City, Texas 77590
|GALVESTON COUNTY DIVORCE COURTS
The 306th District Family Court of Galveston County handles only family related cases. It shares
jurisdiction with county courts at law 1, 2 and 3 on family cases.
Divorce is one of life's greatest hardships, traumas and challenges, destroying family
and finances, where love often turns to bitter hate, where childrens' and spouses'
futures can be destroyed. We can help you survive and navigate the mazed holocaust
of your family, the viscious and degrading attack on YOU, the terrible emotional,
financial and formidable legal war, when you need a well-trained-experienced and
prepared veteran gladiator, a pit bull peacemaker through strength, BESIDE YOU, in
the trenches, for every skirmish or battle, championing your cause, your best LOYAL
friend and advisor for the duration.
General Outine of a Divorce Action:
I. Petition for Divorce Filed which may seek immediate restraining and
protective orders against family violence where appropriate
II. Temporary Orders Hearing
a. temporary use of property
b. injunctions and other orders for protection of persons and property
c. temporary custody of children and visitation, primary caretaker, child
d. temporary spousal support(also know as maintenance and alimony)
e. interim attorney;s fees
f.. temporary responsiblity for payment of debts
a. parties seek to learn about the other sides case through
requests to the other side for information, document production
a. parties meet before mediator who tries to persuade parties to
settle their differences without a trial
V. Full Trial Before Judge or Jury
a. Most of the same issues at temporary orders hearing but on
a final basis.
b. Division of Property and Debt
a. Actions to make non-compliant party follow court orders.
a. Actions to change orders involving children where there have been
material and substantial changes in circumstances that would be in
the children's best interest to modify those orders
Texas House Bill 901 changing the spousal maintenance law in the Texas Family Code
became effective for divorce cases filed on or after September 1, 2011. The bill revises
the conditions that establish eligibility for spousal maintenance, commonly referred to
as alimony, and changes the factors required to be considered by a court in determining
the nature, amount, duration, and manner of periodic payments for a spouse who is
eligible to receive maintenance.
Eligibility for spousal maintenance requires that the spouse seeking maintenance lack
sufficient property to provide for the spouse’s minimum reasonable needs.
The new law provides potentially increased relief to spouses who have been out of the
work force, are disabled, are victims of family violence or are the primary custodians of
a disabled child.
Major changes to the Texas spousal support law are:
1. The maximum amount of spousal support that courts may award increased from
$2,500 to $5,000.00 per month, although still limited to 20 percent of the payer’s
average gross monthly income.
2. The duration of spousal support extended from a maximum of 3 years to a maximum
of 5, 7 or 10 years, generally depending on the length of the marriage.
3. The law clarified that if a person has primary care for a disabled child, the custodial
parent may be prevented because of the child’s disability from earning sufficient
income to meet the custodial parent’s minimum reasonable needs.
4. The law also clarified that a person may not be held in contempt for failing to pay
spousal support which is in an agreed order and extends beyond the period of time
provided under the law.
In order to receive “maintenance,” (which is the statutory term for spousal support),
the spouse seeking support must lack sufficient property to provide for the spouse’s
“minimum reasonable needs”, AND one of the following:
(1) The recipient must be unable to earn sufficient income to provide for his or her
minimum reasonable needs because of an incapacitating mental or physical disability;
(2) The marriage lasted for 10 years or longer and the recipient lacks the ability to
earn sufficient income to provide for his or her minimum reasonable needs;
(3) The recipient is the custodian of a child of the marriage of any age who requires
substantial care and personal supervision because of a physical or mental disability
that prevents the spouse from earning sufficient income to provide for the spouse’s
minimum reasonable needs; OR
(4) The person ordered to pay support was convicted of or received deferred
jurisdiction for an act of family violence during the pendency of the suit or within two
years of the date the suit is filed.
Under the previous law, under most circumstances, the court could only order
maintenance for a maximum of three years, regardless of the length of the marriage.
Under the new law, the court can order maintenance to continue for:
(1) 5 years if the parties were married less than 10 years and the maintenance is
awarded due to family violence;
(2) 5 years if the parties were married more than 10 years, but less than 20 years.
(3) 7 years if the parties were married more than 20 years, but less than 30 years;
(4) 10 years if the parties were married for more than 30 years.
In cases where the maintenance is awarded due to the mental or physical disability of
the spouse or a child of the marriage, the court may order that the maintenance
continue as long as the disability continues. However, in all circumstances, the law
provides that the Court shall order maintenance for the shortest reasonable period that
allows the recipient to earn sufficient income to meet his or her reasonable needs.
If you are think about getting a divorce, and want to know your legal rights, Call for an
|Experience You Can Trust
TEXAS CITY LAWYER
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client comes first!