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Under certain circumstances, a foster parent may intervene in a CPS case before twelve months. The statutory and case law provisions that govern a foster parent’s ability to intervene in ongoing CPS litigation are complicated. There are many misconceptions about this based upon lawyers and non-lawyers alike oversimplifying the statutory provisions. 

In some circumstances, the foster parents know the child better than anyone else, and the foster parent’s intervention in the CPS case is necessary in order for the court to hear all of the facts and be able to determine what is in the ...

A CPS case has a twelve-month deadline with several important hearings and conferences along the way. There are adversarial hearings, status review hearings, permanency review hearings, family group conferences, and permanency conferences. Each hearing or conference has specific statutory requirements that must be met by CPS or the court.

Ordinarily, the child must be returned to the parents, or the CPS case must end by some other manner, by the twelve-month deadline. The court may sometimes grant a six-month extension to a CPS case under extraordinary circumstances, at which ...

A CPS court hearing has many unique people involved, including: the Department of Family and Protective Services (“CPS” or “The Department”), their attorney (“District Attorney” or “County Attorney”), the Guardian Ad Litem (“GAL”), the Attorney Ad Litem (“AAL”), the parents and their attorneys, and the foster parents.

The Department of Family and Protective Services (“CPS” or “The Department”) is the State Agency that is responsible for protecting abused and neglected children. In CPS Court, they are the “Petitioner” because they are ...

Insupportability is another name for what is commonly called a “no-fault divorce”. In Texas, you can get a divorce based simply upon not getting along with your spouse anymore. The typical language found in a divorce petition or divorce decree will state that the grounds for divorce are based on a “discord or conflict in personalities that destroys the legitimate ends of the marital relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.”

Even if one of the spouses is at fault for the break-up of the marriage, many spouses choose to pursue a divorce based on the ...

If you and your spouse live in different counties, the county in which the divorce is filed is an important consideration. Some counties in Texas have Standing Orders that immediately become effective upon a party when they file for divorce or are served with divorce papers. Standing Orders govern the conduct of the parties while the divorce is ongoing, and typically address issues such as children, property, and communications between the parties.

Additionally, some counties have local rules that will govern some of the details of the divorce proceedings. There may also be some ...

An ICPC Home Study gets its name from the Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC), which has been adopted by the State of Texas. The ICPC governs how, when, and why a child may be placed across state lines. An ICPC Home Study is an assessment of the home of a prospective placement for the purposes of placing a child across state lines.

In the context of a CPS suit, an ICPC Home Study typically occurs when Texas identifies a family member that lives in another state and would like to have the child placed with them. The ICPC Home Study process is designed to be quick (less than 60 days ...

A Standing Order typically governs the conduct of parties in a divorce or a Suit Affecting the Parent Child Relationship (SAPCR). Standing Orders are usually orders by county, and many counties in Texas do not have standing Orders. If the county in which the lawsuit is filed has Standing Orders, the become effective on the party as soon as the lawsuit is filed, and they become effective on the other party as soon as the citation paperwork is served on the other party to the lawsuit.

Standing Orders do not have to be requested. They automatically apply to every divorce or SAPCR filed in the ...

The Texas Family Code provides a list of twenty-seven rights and duties that a person may have to a child. Of those, most child custody disputes focus on only four of these rights:

  1. The right to establish the primary residence of the child;
  2. The right to consent to non-emergency medical, dental, psychiatric, psychological and surgical treatment involving invasive procedures;
  3. The right to make education decisions; and
  4. The right to receive, or the duty to pay, child support.

Being a parent or guardian is much more than just having possession of a child. These rights and duties will ...

Texas law provides several fault-based grounds for granting a divorce. This means that one of the spouses is directly at fault for the break-up of the marriage. These include: cruelty, adultery, conviction of a felony, abandonment, living apart, and confinement in a mental hospital. Cruelty and adultery are the most commonly used fault-based grounds for divorce.

Pursuing a divorce based upon fault-based grounds has many strategic benefits; however, it is not the best thing to do in every case. Often times, a fault-based divorce may become more contested, drawn-out, and costly ...

No. The Texas Family Code explicitly provides that a few things cannot become a reimbursable claims upon divorce. Student loans are one of those items.

This is a matter of "public policy" that the Texas Legislature simply believes should not be something that spouses argue over upon divorce. If you paid off your spouses students loans, that is money that you can never get back. No matter how big the loan, or what the source of funds were that you used to pay off the loan, that money cannot be reimbursed to you during a divorce proceeding.

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Family law can be complicated.

This blog contains some of the most common questions that our family law attorneys receive. Search or click below to learn more about common family law issues regarding divorce, child custody, adoption, and CPS.

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