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Collin County child support attorneyChild support is often one of the most contentious elements of divorce, but parental disagreements about child support and what it should cover often endure long after a divorce is finalized. As long as a child is under 18 or is still in high school, child support payments are usually required so one parent is not left meeting the entire financial burden of a child’s needs. 

Texas child support laws are quite conservative compared to many other states. Child support is intended to cover the basic housing, clothing, health, educational, and nutritional needs of a child, but will often cover nothing else. This can leave the parent who has a child most of the time scrambling to meet the child’s needs. If you are a parent who needs childcare in Texas, read on to find out whether you can ask your child’s other parent to help cover this important expense. 

Childcare Costs Are Rising Around the County

While the cost of childcare varies depending on the part of Texas in which a family lives, even less expensive areas have childcare costs that can far exceed one parent’s ability to pay by themselves. Parents of infants can expect to pay at least $1,000 a month, and childcare for older children is not much less. 

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Lucas Family Law AttorneyThe safety of every child is paramount. In the state of Texas, children are protected from neglect and abuse by the Child Protective Service (CPS), which is a division of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS). They investigate cases of physical and mental abuse and neglect throughout the state and can remove children from unsafe environments. While most child protective service cases are well-founded, the system can also be used by a parent for malicious ends. Sometimes it is to try to win greater custody rights of their children and sometimes it is for nothing more than spite or vengeance towards a former spouse or parent of their child.

What to Do During a CPS Investigation

No matter if you are completely innocent of the charges against you, it is still very important to fully cooperate with the investigation. You may feel angry, confused, and scared of losing your child. However, if you do not cooperate with the investigator, it will reflect poorly on you and hurt your case. You have the right to be represented through the process and should retain an attorney who has experience with DFPS and Child Protective Services investigations.

During a typical investigation, the CPS caseworker will:

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Wylie Family Law AttorneyBecoming a father should be a life-changing moment in any man’s life. However, there should be no clouds of uncertainty hanging over you or the child. If you are uncertain of your paternity or if your paternity is being disputed by the child’s mother, there are steps you can take to legally determine if you are the father of the child. No matter what led to the disputed paternity case, the legal establishment of paternity can benefit the child, the father, and the mother.

Options for Establishing Paternity in Texas

If a man and woman are married, or if the child is born within 300 days of the couple’s divorce, the man is legally presumed to be the father of the child. For couples who are not married but agree on who the father of the child is, paternity can be established by both parents signing an Acknowledgment of Paternity (AOP) form. This form is only legally valid if both parents sign.

If there is any dispute or uncertainty over who the father of the child is, then the simplest way to establish paternity is through a DNA test. After a paternity suit is filed, then the mother, father, and child will have their DNA tested through a simple cheek swab. The accuracy rate of the tests is nearly perfect.

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Wylie Family Law AttorneyIf you are married, it is common to find yourself worrying or wondering about your joint finances. You may not want to burden your spouse with any new debt you have taken on. You may even be considering a divorce and want to secure what you consider your separate property or assets. Like the better-known prenuptial agreement, a postnuptial agreement, also known as a marital property agreement, can be used to clarify what portion of a couple’s property is shared and which is considered separate.

Benefits of Creating a Postnuptial Agreement

Under Texas law, a postnuptial agreement can be used by spouses to divide shared marital property into separate, individual property and merge previously separate property into marital property.

A common use of the agreement is to insulate each other from risk when taking on new debt or if one spouse entered the marriage with substantial debt. If one spouse is starting or investing in a new business opportunity, they could separate out that portion of their assets from the couple’s community property. They also have the option to transfer assets, such as the marital house, to the other spouse so that it wouldn’t be at risk if the business failed and creditors were looking for assets to repay the debts.

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Collin County Alimony LawyerDivorce brings about many changes to a person’s life. Not only are there many emotional changes to adjust to, but divorce can also bring financial changes that need to be dealt with, too. It can be especially difficult if one spouse was the primary breadwinner, and the other spouse was in charge of maintaining the house. Suddenly, the spouse who did not work outside of the home has absolutely no income coming in.

Situations like this are one reason why it is an excellent idea for couples to have a prenuptial agreement in place before they marry. In fact, even if you are already married, it is not too late. Many couples still choose to have a postnuptial agreement drawn up. Alimony is one of the many issues that can be addressed in a prenuptial agreement and can make the transition from married life to single life a little easier financially.

If you do not have a prenuptial agreement in place, then your divorce attorney can include an alimony request as part of your divorce settlement.

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