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Family Law And Related MattersFamily

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Marital Facilitation
Premarital And Postmarital Agreements


Litigation

     Texas and the United States both utilize an adversarial legal system. Centuries of experience with legal systems has shown that this is the most effective and reliable system for arriving at the truth, before a judgment is dispensed to resolve conflicts and impose justice. However, in the context of a family, an adversarial process may not be the best approach because of the bitterness it engenders.  This is especially true when children are involved, and the parents will continue to be in each other's lives. It is the children who suffer the most from hostility and bitterness between their parents. Research indicates that one of the best predictors of how well children will function after a divorce is the level of hostility between their parents. Children who's parents have high levels of conflict and animosity tend to not fare as well. Adversarial litigation should be a last resort when children are involved, and other avenues should be explored first, including counseling, marital facilitation, or formal mediation. If all else fails, a Texas judge will step in and dictate to the parties how their property will be divided and how their parenting rights, roles and responsibilities with their children will be defined. However, research has indicated that couples who's cases are resolved by agreed settlement are more likely to be satisfied with the outcome, feel the process if more fair, and are more likely to abide by the agreement than a judicially imposed resolution.


Non Litigation

     Services that are helpful in reducing conflict and perhaps lessening the need for contested litigation, include marriage and family counseling and marital facilitation. By voluntarily resolving conflicts between parties, the need for court intervention can often be reduced or eliminated. The cost of counseling, facilitation or mediation services is small compared to the cost of contested litigation. Moreover the parties save themselves the heartache and stress that inevitably follows the rigors of an adversarial trial.


Premarital And Postmarital Agreements

     Premarital agreements can be used to set out prior to marriage, how a couple's assets and liabilities will be handled in the event of divorce. There are many reasons why this advanced planning might be appropriate or advantageous for a couple. Having a well thought out, orderly plan in place allocating financial issues can minimize confusion and conflict during the marriage, an limit the scope of controversy in the event the relationship comes to an end.

     Postmarital agreements can be useful tools for organizing a couple's assets and liabilities after they are married.  It can also provide useful asset protection where one spouse is in a risky occupation, financial position, or has a high liability potential or health risks.  It can also help minimize conflicts over differences in financial management approaches.