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Family Court

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The 280th Protective order court is a Harris County, Texas family law court for which the only type of hearing are Chapter 85 of the Texas family court.  On the bench at this writing is Judge Lynn Bradshaw-Hull.  Judge Tony Lindsay was the 1st Judge to sit in the 280th after it was designated a domestic violence court.  This is the only court in Texas which hears strictly protective orders.  A private attorney may prosecute this type of lawsuit, but if no divorce is pending, you can get the Harris County District Attorney’s office to file suit for you.  Beth Baron is the lead attorney for the domestic violence unit.  I have tried cases with her and also I had defended and prosecuted protective orders under both judges.  Let me tell you, under Judge Lindsay, it was much easier to have a protective order issued then Judge Hull.  Both are women but Judge Hull is unlikely to issue the order unless proven violence which usually means some form of bruising or broken skin.  A gun to the face or other vital areas may get you there along with stalking, but yelling and threats is a tough sell in her court.  This is always good when you represent the respondent.  On the Applicant side, you may consider temporary restraining order in one the family courts instead of the protective order and a request for some injunctions out of the family court.  I have tried 10 cases in this court since its designation as a family court and filed one mandamus in the appellate courts.  Judge Hull is a hard ass, but soft spoken judge.  Keep your mouth shut unless she or a lawyer asks a question.  Tell the truth and do not get excited.  You will come out on the winning side if you have good facts and hard direct evidence.  The Courts website can be found at http://www.justex.net/courts/family/FAMILYCourt.aspx?crt=21.  If you cannot afford an attorney try http://www.houstontx.gov/police/fvu/services.htm which is the link to the Harris County District Attorney office.  The docket call in the 280th Protective Court is typically on time.  Judge allows late calls, but is short when you have a trial conflict.  (maybe you should not have taken the case).  I am of the opinion that ever family law judge holds a protective order against you.  Never agree to a protective order that states you are not admitting to family violence but are agreeing to the protective order being issued.  Just try the case and have judge order if you think you are not guilty of harming your significant other.

Any file application for a protective order, at the 280th District Court will be made at the address 201 Caroline, 15th Floor. The case will be named respecting the following: “Name of the Applicant vs. Name of the Respondent”. Do not use, in any circumstances the phrase “In the Matter of the Marriage of”. An address form must be completed. The rules and policies usually applied in a family law and divorce courts are not applicable in the court. The motions for continuance are granted if they are filled 48 hours in advance.

All the applications for the Protective Order of this court will have separate numbers. Even if this application is filled together with a divorce or suit, it will still be taken separately and will not be treated in the same document. An application may include only one respondent. The applicant must file a Civil Process Request Form.

If the applicant needs a kick-out order, an in-person testimony is required, to make the respondent leave the residence. For that, the applicant must contact the clerk for an available date to appear in front of the Court.

About the Author

Michael Busby Jr. is a divorce and family law attorney who practices in Harris County Texas and the counties that surround Harris County. He has been in practice for over 14 years and has tried over 300 cases.  He is familiar with the policy and procedures of the Houston Texas Divorce Courts.   Our office is open until 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for working folks.  Please call with your family law or divorce questions for 280th Protective Order Court in Houston Texas.

Michael Busby Jr.

2909 Hillcroft Suite 350

Houston, Texas 77057

(713) 974-1151

Visit me on the web at www.busby-lee.com

280th Protective Order Court also would be applicable to the following communities within the greater Houston, Texas Area:

Baytown, Bellaire, Bunker Hill, Deer Park, Friendswood, Galena Park, Humble, Jacinto City, Katy, La Porte, Pasadena, Tomball, West University, Cypress, Crosby, Woodlands, Denver Harbor, Spring & The Woodlands, Spring, Stafford, Sugarland, Galveston, Missouri City, Richmond, & Alief

 

 

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The form used in below.  This is a standard form for divorces and many suit affecting the parent child relationship in Houston, Texas.  I typically appear in this type of hearing at least once a week.

NO. _______________________

IN   THE MATTER OF

§

IN   THE DISTRICT COURT
THE   MARRIAGE OF

§

§

§

AND

§

 JUDICIAL DISTRICT

§

§

AND   IN THE INTEREST OF

§

 CHILDREN

§

HARRIS   COUNTY, TEXAS

 

                                     TEMPORARY RESTRAINING ORDER AND

                       ORDER SETTING HEARING FOR TEMPORARY ORDERS

 

The application of Petitioner, , for temporary restraining order was presented to the Court today.  Respondent is .

The children the subject of this suit are .

The Court examined the pleadings of Petitioner and finds that Petitioner is entitled to a joint and mutual temporary restraining order.

IT IS THEREFORE ORDERED that the clerk of this Court issue a joint and mutual temporary restraining order restraining Petitioner and Respondent, and Petitioner and Respondent are immediately restrained, from:

1.         Communicating with the other party in person, by telephone, or in writing in vulgar, profane, obscene, or indecent language or in a coarse or offensive manner.

2.         Threatening the other party in person, by telephone, or in writing to take unlawful action against any person.

3.         Placing one or more telephone calls, anonymously, at any unreasonable hour, in an offensive and repetitious manner, or without a legitimate purpose of communication.

4.         Causing bodily injury to the other party or to a child of either party.

5.         Threatening the other party or a child of either party with imminent bodily injury.

6.         Destroying, removing, concealing, encumbering, transferring, or otherwise harming or reducing the value of the property of one or both of the parties.

7.         Falsifying any writing or record relating to the property of either party.

8.         Misrepresenting or refusing to disclose to the other party or to the Court, on proper request, the existence, amount, or location of any property of one or both of the parties.

9.         Damaging or destroying the tangible property of one or both of the parties, including any document that represents or embodies anything of value.

10.       Tampering with the tangible property of one or both of the parties, including any document that represents or embodies anything of value, and causing pecuniary loss to the other party.

11.       Selling, transferring, assigning, mortgaging, encumbering, or in any other manner alienating any of the property of Petitioner or Respondent, whether personalty or realty, and whether separate or community, except as specifically authorized by this order.

12.       Incurring any indebtedness, other than legal expenses in connection with this suit, except as specifically authorized by this order.

13.       Making withdrawals from any checking or savings account in any financial institution for any purpose, except as specifically authorized by this order.

14.       Spending any sum of cash in each party’s possession or subject to each party’s control for any purpose, except as specifically authorized by this order.

15.       Withdrawing or borrowing in any manner for any purpose from any retirement, profit-sharing, pension, death, or other employee benefit plan or employee savings plan or from any individual retirement account or Keogh account, except as specifically authorized by this order.

16.       Entering any safe-deposit box in the name of or subject to the control of Petitioner or Respondent, whether individually or jointly with others.

17.       Withdrawing or borrowing in any manner all or any part of the cash surrender value of life insurance policies on the life of Petitioner or Respondent, except as specifically authorized by this order.

18.       Changing or in any manner altering the beneficiary designation on any life insurance on the life of Petitioner or Respondent or the parties’ children.

19.       Canceling, altering, failing to renew or pay premiums, or in any manner affecting the present level of coverage of any life, casualty, automobile, or health insurance policies insuring the parties’ property or persons, including the parties’ children.

20.       Opening or diverting mail addressed to the other party.

21.       Signing or endorsing the other party’s name on any negotiable instrument, check, or draft, such as tax refunds, insurance payments, and dividends, or attempting to negotiate any negotiable instrument payable to the other party without the personal signature of the other party.

22.       Taking any action to terminate or limit credit or charge cards in the name of the other party.

23.       Discontinuing or reducing the withholding for federal income taxes on each party’s wages or salary while this case is pending.

24.       Destroying, disposing of, or altering any financial records of the parties, including but not limited to records from financial institutions (including canceled checks and deposit slips), all records of credit purchases or cash advances, tax returns, and financial statements.

25.       Destroying, disposing of, or altering any e-mail or other electronic data relevant to the subject matters of this case, whether stored on a hard drive or on a diskette or other electronic storage device.

26.       Terminating or in any manner affecting the service of water, electricity, gas, telephone, cable television, or other contractual services, such as security, pest control, landscaping, or yard maintenance,  or in any manner attempting to withdraw any deposits for service in connection with those services.

27.       Excluding Petitioner from the use and enjoyment of the residence located at .

28.       Excluding Respondent from the use and enjoyment of the residence located at .

29.       Entering, operating, or exercising control over any vehicle in the possession of Petitioner.

30.       Entering, operating, or exercising control over any vehiclein the possession of Respondent.

31.       Disturbing the peace of the children or of another party.

32.       Withdrawing the children from enrollment in the school or day-care facility where the children are presently enrolled.

33.       Hiding or secreting the children from the other party.

34.       Making disparaging remarks regarding the other party or the other party’s family in the presence or within the hearing of the children.

35.       Consuming alcohol within the 24 hours before or during the period of possession of or access to the children.

36.       Permitting an unrelated adult with whom either party has an intimate or dating relationship to remain in the same residence with the children between the hours of 10:00 P.M. and 8:00A.M.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that each party is authorized only as follows:

To make expenditures and incur indebtedness for reasonable and necessary living expenses for food, clothing, shelter, transportation, and medical care.

To make expenditures and incur indebtedness for reasonable attorney’s fees and expenses in connection with this suit.

To make withdrawals from accounts in financial institutions only for the purposes authorized by this order.

To engage in acts reasonable and necessary to conduct each party’s usual business and occupation.

This joint and mutual restraining order is effective immediately and shall continue in force and effect until further order of this Court or until it expires by operation of law. This order shall be binding on Petitioner and Respondent; on Petitioner’s and Respondent’s agents, servants, and employees; and on those persons in active concert or participation with them who receive actual notice of this order by personal service or otherwise.  The requirement of a bond is waived.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the clerk shall issue notice to Respondent, to appear, and Respondent is ORDERED to appear in person, and Respondent is to furnish information sufficient to accurately identify Respondent’s net resources and ability to pay child support and to bring with him tax returns for the past two years, a financial information statement substantially in the form and detail prescribed by the Texas Family Law Practice Manual (3d ed.), form 4-2, and pay stubs for the past three months.  IT IS ORDERED that Respondent shall appear with those documents before this Court in the courthouse at

___  1115 Congress, Houston, Texas 77020

___  201 Caroline, Houston, Texas 77020

on                     at                        . M.  The purpose of the hearing is to determine whether, while this case is pending:

1.         The preceding temporary restraining order should be made a temporary injunction pending final hearing.

2.         The additional temporary injunction prayed for should be granted.

3.         Petitioner should be awarded the exclusive use and possession of the residence located at, as well as the furniture, furnishings, and other personal property at that residence, while this case is pending, and Respondent should be enjoined from entering or remaining on the premises of the residence and exercising possession or control of any of this personal property, except as authorized by order of this Court.

4.         Petitioner should be awarded exclusive use and control of any vehicle in possession of petitioner, and Respondent should be enjoined from entering, operating, or exercising control over it.

5.         Petitioner should be awarded the exclusive use of the following property, and Respondent should be enjoined from exercising possession or control of any of this property:  .

6.         Petitioner and Respondent should be appointed temporary joint managing conservators, and Petitioner should be designated as the conservator who has the exclusive right to designate the primary residence of the children.

7.         Respondent should be ordered to pay child support, health insurance premiums for coverage on the children, an equitable portion of the children’s uninsured medical expenses, the children’s private school expenses and the children’s day‑care expenses while this case is pending.

8.         The Court should order reasonable periods of electronic communication between the children and Petitioner to supplement Petitioner’s periods of possession of the children.

9.         The Court should order Respondent to pay support to Petitioner until a final decree is signed.

10.       The Court should order Respondent to produce copies of income tax returns for tax year 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2012, a financial statement, and current pay stubs by a date certain.

11.       The Court should order Respondent to pay reasonable interim attorney’s fees and expenses.

12.       The Court should order Respondent to provide a sworn inventory and appraisement of all the separate and community property owned or claimed by the parties and all debts and liabilities owed by the parties substantially in the form and detail prescribed by the Texas Family Law Practice Manual (3d ed.), form 7-1.

13.       The Court should order Respondent to produce copies of all the tax information necessary to prepare Petitioner’s tax returns for tax year 2008, 2009 and 2010 , including tax returns and all supporting schedules for year 2012, by a date certain.

14.       The Court should order the parties to participate in an alternative dispute resolution process before trial of this matter.

15.       The Court should order Respondent to execute all necessary releases required by Petitioner to obtain any discovery allowed by the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure.

16.       The Court should order Respondent to execute all necessary releases pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and 45 C.F.R. section 164.508 to permit Petitioner to obtain health-care information regarding the children.

17.       The Court should order Respondent to execute for all health-care providers of the children an authorization for disclosure of protected health information to Petitioner pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and 45 C.F.R. section 164.508.

18.       The Court should order Respondent to designate Petitioner as a person to whom protected health information regarding the children may be disclosed whenever Respondent executes an authorization for disclosure of protected health information pursuant to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and 45 C.F.R. section 164.508.

19.       The Court should order a pretrial conference to simplify the issues in this case and determine the stipulations of the parties and for any other matters the Court deems appropriate.

20.       The Court should make all other and further orders respecting the property and the parties that are pleaded for or that are deemed necessary and equitable and for the safety and welfare of the children.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that any authorized person eighteen years of age or older who is not a party to or interested in the outcome of this case may serve any citation, notice, or process in this case.

SIGNED on                               at               .M.

 

                                                                                   

JUDGE PRESIDING

 

The purpose of the temporary restraining order to set up the rules of the divorce.  You may not be agreeable to visitation and support issues with your spouse.  Thus, Judicial intervention in required to give the parties guidance in how to behave in the divorce.

About the Author

Michael Busby Jr. is a divorce and family law attorney who practices in Harris County Texas and the counties that surround Harris County. He has been in practice for over 10 years and has tried over 100 cases.  He is familiar with the policy and procedures of the Houston Texas Divorce Courts.   Our office is open until 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for working folks.  Please call with your family law or divorce questions for contested divorce Houston Texas.

Michael Busby Jr.

2909 Hillcroft Suite 350

Houston, Texas 77057

(713) 974-1151

Visit me on the web at www.busby-lee.com

Temporary Restraining Order Houston Texas also would be applicable to the following communities within the greater Houston, Texas Area:

Baytown, Bellaire, Bunker Hill, Deer Park, Friendswood, Galena Park, Humble, Jacinto City, Katy, La Porte, Pasadena, Tomball, West University, Cypress, Crosby, Woodlands, Denver Harbor, Spring & The Woodlands, Spring, Stafford, Sugarland, Galveston, Missouri City, Richmond, & Alief

 

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When you have a divorce agreement or uncontested divorce in Houston, this means that there is no dispute over who gets what.  This can save both time and money for the husband and wife.  You start by filing an original “Petition for Divorce”.  This would be filed in the courthouse of the county in which you reside in Houston, Texas we file at 201 Caroline in the new civil courts buildings.  The petition with no children looks like form below:

NO. _____________________

IN   THE MATTER OF

§

IN   THE DISTRICT COURT
THE   MARRIAGE OF

§

§

§

_______TH   JUDICIAL DISTRICT

§

§

HARRIS   COUNTY, TEXAS

    ORIGINAL PETITION FOR DIVORCE

1.         Discovery Level

Discovery in this case is intended to be conducted under level 2 of rule 190 of the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure.

2.         Parties

This suit is brought by , Petitioner. .

is Respondent.

3.         Domicile

Petitioner has been a domiciliary of Texas for the preceding six-month period and a resident of this county for the preceding ninety-day period.

4.         Service

No service on Respondent is necessary at this time.

5.         Protective Order Statement

No protective order under title 4 of the Texas Family Code is in effect, and no application for a protective order is pending with regard to the parties to this suit.

6.         Dates of Marriage and Separation

The parties were married on or about January and ceased to live together as husband and wife on or about January .

7.         Grounds for Divorce

The marriage has become insupportable because of discord or conflict of personalities between Petitioner and Respondent that destroys the legitimate ends of the marriage relationship and prevents any reasonable expectation of reconciliation.

8.         Children of the Marriage

There is no child under eighteen years of age or otherwise entitled to support who was born or adopted of this marriage, and none is expected.

9.         Division of Community Property

Petitioner believes Petitioner and Respondent will enter into an agreement for the division of their estate.  If such an agreement is made, Petitioner requests the Court to approve the agreement and divide their estate in a manner consistent with the agreement.  If such an agreement is not made, Petitioner requests the Court to divide their estate in a manner that the Court deems just and right, as provided by law.

10.       Separate Property

Petitioner owns certain separate property that is not part of the community estate of the parties, and Petitioner requests the Court to confirm that separate property as Petitioner’s separate property and estate.

11.       Prayer

Petitioner prays that citation and notice issue as required by law and that the Court grant a divorce and all other relief requested in this petition.

Petitioner prays for general relief.

Respectfully submitted,

Once you file the case, you then then to prepare the final decree of divorce and waiver to prove up your “divorce agreement.”

Divorce Agreement Houston Texas also would be applicable to the following communities within the greater Houston, Texas Area:

Baytown, Bellaire, Bunker Hill, Deer Park, Friendswood, Galena Park, Humble, Jacinto City, Katy, La Porte, Pasadena, Tomball, West University, Cypress, Crosby, Woodlands, Denver Harbor, Spring & The Woodlands, Spring, Stafford, Sugarland, Galveston, Missouri City, Richmond, & Alief

Texas has sixty day waiting period for which you must wait to prove up your divorce agreement.  After this 60 days, the court requires that the petitioner appear once in court to answer several questions about the dissolution of the marriage.  Once you make the court appearance, Judge typically signs that same day, then your case become indexed in the county records and is considered final 30 days after judge signs the order.  This is due to the ability of a party to file a motion for new trial within the day window.

About the Author

Michael Busby Jr. is a divorce and family law attorney who practices in Harris County Texas and the counties that surround Harris County. He has been in practice for over 10 years and has tried over 100 cases.  He is familiar with the policy and procedures of the Houston Texas Divorce Courts.   Our office is open until 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for working folks.  Please call with your family law or divorce questions for contested divorce Houston Texas.

Michael Busby Jr.

2909 Hillcroft Suite 350

Houston, Texas 77057

(713) 974-1151

Visit me on the web at www.busby-lee.com

 

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Before filing for divorce here are some pointers.  Be careful about destroying evidence as this may cause you problems later.  At the same time, you want to review this list and attempt to cushion any negative impact your actions prior to filing divorce may had on your decision making.  Some pointers for you:

  • Do check social networking sites and possibly shut down;
  • Do secure self and make provisions to be safe; if there is a threat of violence;
  • Do inform attorney of all relevant facts;
  • Do talk about pre-and postnups, if you have had one;
  • Do walk away from arguments and conflict;
  • Do gather documents early in the process or before divorce begins;
  • Do attend parenting class on attorney advice;
  • Do gather information for inventories – this includes your assets and your debts;
  • Do be on best behavior during the divorce;
  • Do stop cursing in all forms, particularly in texts, e-mails, or other writings;
  • Do disclose criminal history to your attorney;
  • Do seek help for use of alcohol or unlawful substances before filing;
  • Do act as if every conversation is recorded;
  • Do disclose bad behavior to your attorney.
  • Do Not violate a standing order or injunction;
  • Do Not transfer or withdraw large money after filing for divorce;
  • Do Not sell property without the Court’s permission;
  • Do Not take kids out of school or enroll them in a new school;
  • Do Not incur large or frivolous debts;
  • Do Not discuss divorce in depth with kids;
  • Do Not start another romantic relationship;
  • Do Not put divorce information on social network sites;
  • Do Not remove kids from the state to change their residence;
  • Do Not hide assets or resist discovery;
  • Do Not have expectations that the divorce will be over quickly or inexpensively;
  • Do Not be rude or impolite to the other spouse
  • Do Not blog publicly about your divorce proceedings;
  • Do Not write and send nasty emails;
  • Do Not send nasty text messages;
  • Do Not take scandalous photos of yourself;
  • Do Not remove, hide or secret the kids from your spouse.

Lastly, please be advised that we cannot guarantee any expected outcome or conclusion of your legal matter due to numerous and complicated factors which are beyond our control.  Accordingly, we cannot guarantee a favorable outcome in any legal matter that we are handling for you.  We will however, provide reasonable and competent services to represent and protect your interests and will not conclude or settle the matter without your approval.  Should a problem arise with your spouse, please contact our office so that we may be able to advise you of the next step that will need to occur. If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact our office.

About the Author

Michael Busby Jr. is a divorce and family law attorney who practices in Harris County Texas and the counties that surround Harris County. He has been in practice for over 14 years and has tried over 300 cases.  He is familiar with the policy and procedures of the Houston Texas Divorce Courts.   Our office is open until 8:30 p.m. on Wednesdays and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. for working folks.  Please call with your family law or divorce questions for contested divorce Houston Texas.

Michael Busby Jr.

2909 Hillcroft Suite 350

Houston, Texas 77057

(713) 974-1151

Visit me on the web at www.busby-lee.com