Blogs

Adorable toddler boy looking out of the window

Giving Your Children Your Best During Divorce

I’ve seen countless families transition through divorce. I’ve seen families handle their divorce well and I’ve seen families cycle downward into crisis. Some parents are so hurt and wounded that it is all they could do to make it through their divorce.  Because of their pain, their focus shifts inwards and away from their children… Read More

Family Seeing A Psychotherapist

Allocating Parental Rights in Divorce

One important aspect of every divorce with children is allocating the parental rights between the parents. During a marriage, both parents presumptively make decisions for their children together. After a divorce, parental decision making will look different and will be governed by the terms in the Decree of Divorce. The Decree of Divorce will include… Read More

Two Parents Fighting Over Child In Divorce Concept

Is a 50/50 Possession Schedule Right for Me?

One of the most difficult topics to resolve in custody litigation is what possession schedule will each party have with the children. Judges in Texas have the discretion to order any possession schedule that the Judge believes is in the best interest of the child, which includes ordering a 50/50 possession schedule. However, the Texas… Read More

Calendar

Working Parents Making Possession of the Children Work

One of the many challenges in the divorce process is figuring out when each parent will have possession of the children – the parenting plan schedule. This issue is even more complicated when both parents have demanding jobs and particularly when those jobs do not necessarily have the typical nine to five schedule. This article… Read More

Goranson Bain - Child Support In Court

Modifying a Child Support Order in Texas

How Can Child Support Orders be Modified? Child support orders can only be changed by the entering of a new court order. Informal agreements between the parties are not effective to change the amount of court ordered child support. Therefore, while you and the other party may agree to a change in the amount of… Read More

Social Media- Goranson Bain

Social Media: Impacts both Marriages and Divorce Proceedings

Over the last several years, there have been many studies that have outlined the negative impact of social media on relationships and marriages. Consistently studies have shown that individuals who frequently accessed social media sites are more likely to experience conflict with their partners. The studies also demonstrate that there is a link between social media… Read More

The Art of an Uncontested Divorce

I tell every client that meets with me the same thing – and the result is normally a nervous chuckle. “You can pay to send my kids to college, or you can keep your money and send your own kids to college.” And the result is typically the same – people want to save money,… Read More

The Effects of Divorce on Children of All Ages

Individuals of any age can experience emotional issues when their parents end their marriage. Parents interactions with each other and with their children during and after a divorce can profoundly affect their children’s ability to cope with life and with relationships, both now and into the future. When it comes to divorce, sons and daughters… Read More

Divorce and the Family Home – Keep it or Sell it?

In a divorce action, one of the most difficult financial issues you may face is whether to keep or sell the family home. This decision is also one of the most emotionally charged issues because continuing to live in the family home is comforting and represents security and stability for the children during the stressful… Read More

Mediation Reminders

When preparing for mediation, attorneys and clients often are focused on the “mechanics of the deal.” Obviously, having a negotiation strategy that you are prepared to implement is the centerpiece of effective mediation. However, all too often a successful strategy that is well implemented leading to an apparent “good deal” is circumvented as the result… Read More

Same-Sex Marriage…and Divorce

On June 26, 2015, the Supreme Court of the United States made a landmark decision in Obergefell v. Hodges, holding that the Fourteenth Amendment: (1) requires each State to license a marriage between two people of the same sex and (2) requires each State to recognize same sex marriages, when the marriage was lawfully licensed… Read More

Portrait of Curtis W Harrison II- Goranson Bain Law Firm

Meet Curtis W. Harrison II

Curtis Harrison joined GoransonBain in December of 2011 as a partner. Mr. Harrison has practiced law for twenty-two years, is board certified in family law, and is the current managing partner for GoransonBain. What did you do prior to joining GoransonBain? “I began my practice in 1994 working for a small civil litigation firm in… Read More

How National Same-Sex Marriage Rights Affect Texas Family Issues

The year 2014 had more questions than answers when it came to judicial decisions pertaining to a long-term ban on same sex marriage in Texas. But the June 26th U.S. Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) decision will have a profoundly positive effect on certain family law issues for same-sex couples within the state…. Read More

Texas Surrogacy Agreements Require Agreement by Many Parties

The overall concept of surrogacy has been around for a relatively short period of time, but the process has given new hope to parents who are unable to conceive or carry children and same-sex couples. The exact number of babies born through surrogacy to U.S. families each year is not known because most surrogacy pregnancies… Read More

Counseling Reports May Be Required for Some Texas Divorces

A typical Dallas family lawyer might argue that no judge should have the right to order counseling under the personal belief that a divorcing couple might have a chance for reconciliation. Yet under Section 6.505 of the Texas Family Code, judges actually have this right. When the court requires counseling, this requirement might delay the… Read More

Enforcing Texas Divorce Terms is Not a Do-it-Yourself Project

In Texas, the terms of the final divorce decree form a legally-binding contract that courts expect to be strictly followed because it is also the order of the court. After divorce, however, sometimes circumstances change in ways that affect either party’s ability to continue complying with the document as written. Section 9.003 of the Texas… Read More

What is Involved in a Texas Adoption

When so many children need permanent, loving homes, it may seem counter-intuitive that adopting a child is more complicated and time-consuming than natural childbirth. However, each Plano family law attorney at GoransonBain is quick to point out that the Texas adoption process helps ensure that adoptive parents are, in many ways, better prepared than many… Read More

Avoiding Christmas Custody Games

Christmas is finally here again. For millions of Americans, Christmas really is the most wonderful time of the year. But if you are in the middle of a divorce or child-custody modification, you may have discovered that reindeer aren’t the only ones who are playing games: Perhaps you just received an “Ex-text” informing you for… Read More

Parenting Plans: The Most Important Document in a Divorce

When couples begin pursuing a divorce, they quickly learn how complex their lives have become. Every possession requires analysis to determine ownership. Every loan must continue to be repaid by one spouse or the other. However, no issue in divorce is more important than the continued well-being of the children. Each Dallas divorce attorney at… Read More

Texas Law Does Not Include Provisions for Separation Agreements

Every relationship hits occasional bumps in the road. Some bumps lead directly to divorce court, but a high percentage of couples choose to separate for reasons ranging from requiring space and time to heal the relationship to concerns for the children. But, since Texas law only provides for negotiating the terms of a legal separation… Read More

Does Texas Law Assign Parental Responsibilities to Sperm Donors?

After a 2014 case in Kansas court found that a sperm donor must pay child support in spite of a clear contract that provided the donor with no paternal rights or responsibilities, it is natural for anyone considering donating sperm to question his parental future. That case involved a private donation as opposed to a… Read More

Pre- and Post-Marital Agreements: Common Misconceptions

For most people, signing any legal contract is can be frightening. It seems almost impossible to understand the tightly-packed pages of legal jargon; having some fear is logical and reasonable. Facing that document shortly before getting married — or any time thereafter —can ruin the magic behind a relationship that is all about based on… Read More

The Final Divorce Decree is Not Etched in Stone

A great deal of thought and compromise goes into the development of a Texas divorce decree. However, obtaining a signed “Final Decree of Divorce” does not guarantee that the legal proceedings are over once and for all. Our Courts retain jurisdiction over the case, and over the conservatorship and support of your children, long after… Read More

Boy with Parents

Protecting Your Children During Divorce

A Family Research Council study on the Effects of Divorce on Children would lead anyone to believe that every child of divorce faces a tragic future. Without a doubt, parents need to focus on the wellbeing of their children from the time they decide to file for divorce through every step of the divorce process… Read More

Texas Grandparents May Have Certain Visitation and Custody Rights

If you are like many people, you can look back to your own childhood with many pleasant memories of the time spent with your grandparents. These are the people who let you stay up late when your parents went out, and for some, they stepped in as surrogate parents when needed. Unfortunately, grandparents and children… Read More

The Element of Surprise: Drug Tests in Texas Divorces or Custody Case

For many, divorce can be full of surprises. Sometimes, even the fact that you’re getting divorced comes as a surprise. Our Plano divorce lawyers at Goranson Bain work hard to help mitigate the surprises, but there is one aspect of a divorce when sometimes the surprise is very strategic. Drug tests can radically change the… Read More

Goranson Bain- help

Signs Your Spouse is Cheating

In my client consultations as a Dallas divorce lawyer, I answer many questions about separation and divorce. But the question that always makes me scratch my head is the question that comes well after my client has poured their heart out to me and described the issues they are having with their spouse. They are… Read More

Pregnant and Done: Divorcing When a Child Is Due

Even though it seems counterintuitive, there are often reasons why couples decide to divorce while the wife is pregnant. When this happens, the pregnancy can influence aspects of the divorce that might otherwise be more predictable. If you find yourself in this situation, please contact the Dallas divorce lawyers at Goranson Bain to begin strategizing… Read More

Being an Effective Witness

Giving your testimony is one of the most important events that will occur in your case. While your Dallas family lawyer will be doing her absolute best to represent your interests, who can be a better advocate in support of your case than you? Appear Confident and Calm Witnesses often place an inordinate amount of… Read More

Becoming a Foster Parent

The foster care system of Texas recruits stable families who are interested in sharing their blessings with a child or sibling group in need of a safe and nurturing environment. It is important to know that you do not need to be a candidate for Sainthood to apply and begin the process to become a… Read More

Collaborative Divorce Doesn’t Promote Divorce

As a believing Christian I am often confronted with the question, “How do you do what you do while claiming to be a Christian?” I’ll save the theological response for another time, but my usual answer is this: “How does a Christian medical examiner do what he or she does?” When a person dies, the… Read More

Equal Parenting Time: Will it Work for your Family?

***UPDATE*** House Bill 2363, discussed below, did not become law. Now it is 2017, the Texas Legislature is back in session, and a new “Equal Parenting” bill has been introduced. House Bill 453 contains most of the same provisions, and problems, that were found in last session’s HB 2363. As before, the bill mistakenly focuses… Read More

GoransonBain- Alimony

Finding Someone New: What Happens to the Alimony?

Resolve Alimony Conflicts With the Help of a Divorce Lawyer In most divorce decisions, receiving alimony is conditional.  If a certain condition occurs, the alimony payments will end, even if a spouse is supposed to receive it for a longer period of time. When Does Alimony End? While a divorcing couple can agree to any… Read More

Goranson Bain- Negotiation

Negotiating with Your Spouse

Anticipating How Your Spouse Handles Relationship Stress Can Give You the Edge in Divorce Negotiations Have you ever considered how you and your spouse typically resolve conflicts within your relationship? We as Dallas divorce lawyers feel it could be well worth your while to do so, even if the relationship is ending. Why? We live in… Read More

What Happens to an LLC in Divorce? Part 2

What Happens to an LLC in Divorce? Part 2

Divorce So, what happens to an LLC interest when the spouses divorce?  There is very little case law that deals with divorce and limited liability company interests.  Based on current Texas statutory law the only interest that can be owned by “the member’s spouse, to the extent of the spouse’s membership interest, if any, is… Read More

What Happens to an LLC in Divorce? Part 1

Today, it is not unusual to see a spouse operating a business in the form of a limited liability company or owning an interest in an investment that is a limited liability company (hereafter sometimes referred to as an LLC). This is a relatively recent phenomenon. In 1991 Texas became the 7th state to authorize… Read More

7 Common Tax Issues to Consider When Negotiating Your Divorce Settlement

During your divorce, you will be faced with various tax issues and it is important that you explore those issues with an appropriate professional before you start to negotiate your final divorce settlement. Frequently these tax issues are discovered after the settlement has already been negotiated and having to resolve these tax issues post settlement… Read More

Flat Fee Divorce

How much will my divorce cost? This question is one of the first questions that you will most likely want answered when you are considering filing for a divorce. Unfortunately, the answer is not always simple because the cost of a divorce is driven by many varying factors. One of the most significant factors that… Read More

High Conflict Divorces – What is the Cause?

The best indicator that your divorce is going to be difficult is a realistic view of your marriage. If a marriage has been filled with chronic conflict, then you should expect the divorce process to also be filled with conflict. In almost every high conflict case, the driving force fueling the conflict is a spouse… Read More

Dealing With an Ex Who is an Alcoholic

To some people, the hardest decision they ever have to make is deciding to file for divorce from an alcoholic spouse. When the decision is made, one thing that is seldom analyzed is the fact that one day; the children might be left alone with the alcoholic spouse. To many single parents, this is a… Read More

GRAY DIVORCES: When Older Parties Untie the Knot

In 1967, the Beatles asked: “Will you still need me, will you still feed me, when I’m Sixty Four?” Today, Sir Paul, the answer increasingly is “No.” Divorce among older Americans has grown dramatically over the last decades. Trend spotters have dubbed these break-ups “Gray Divorces,” “Empty Nest Divorces,” or “Silver Separations.” According to a… Read More

Confiding in Friends and Family During a Divorce

A critical decision that must be made early in the process of separating and divorcing is with whom to share your story and legal details. When we are under extreme stress, sadness and anger we human beings often feel relief when we unburden ourselves by telling someone. This is understandable. Strategically, however, it is important… Read More

Adoption

The Fulfilling Journey to Adopting a Child

Adoption is a very special journey. In many ways it is a journey that could be the most joyous and fulfilling experience a person can have. Adoption statistics show how much adoptive parents cherish the time they have with their children. They appreciate every day the opportunity to be a mom and a dad, and… Read More

Holiday Tradition

Parenting Time During the Holidays for Divorcing Parents

Ah, the joy of the holidays. Good food, great memories, and family traditions. It might be your family tradition to spend Thanksgiving morning doing the Turkey Trot – followed by fried turkey at grandma’s house. It might be your family tradition to spend Christmas Eve at a candlelight church service and then waking up before… Read More

The Minimally-Invasive Divorce

Over the last 25 years Americans have been on the cutting edge of advancements in medicine. 25 years ago a back surgery required long hospital stays, metal plates, and months of recovery. Today, surgeons deliver “minimally-invasive” procedures that have folks in and out faster than a TSA security pat-down. So why do we still languish… Read More

Mediation: Know Your Options BEFORE You Litigate

We are blessed in the United States with the greatest system of justice the world has ever known. That is not to say that our civil and criminal court systems are perfect, but it is to boast that our courts inherently aspire to provide fundamental fairness and justice to all within our borders. In our… Read More

Goranson Bain- Electronic Evidence

Recording Your Spouse – A Preliminary Guide

Electronic evidence is more and more prevalent in contested divorce and child-custody cases. Electronic evidence includes text messages, Facebook posts, Instagram pictures, audio and video recordings, and e-mails. It is not uncommon for a client, after doing his/her own “investigative” work, to come into the office with a video recording or other electronic evidence and… Read More

Life After Divorce

It is important to provide notice to the court, governmental agencies, your employer, and others of the changes that have taken place in your life as a result of the divorce whether it is a change in tax status, change of address, change in beneficiary designations, or a name change.   It is also important that… Read More

Goranson Bain- Budget

The Importance of Financial Discussions Prior to Marriage

Some of the leading causes of divorce are financial disputes. Financial infidelity can be just as destructive to a relationship as sexual infidelity. People with differing financial values i.e. a saver versus a spender can cause friction. And often it is very difficult for an individual to change his or her fundamental financial values, habits,… Read More

Goranson Bain- Valuation

Business Valuations in Divorce

When valuing a closely-held business, it is essential to have a thorough knowledge of the measures of value, the methods of valuation and Texas case law.  While not an exact science, valuation of closely-held businesses and professional practices is not purely subjective.  There are well-established methods, procedures and guidelines.  The choice of the method to… Read More

Goranson Bain- children

3 Things You Should Not Do In a Divorce

The simple truth is that when a person is placed under extraordinary stress the universal human instinct for survival frequently tends to temporarily override rationality, common decency, and even parental wisdom. Virtually everyone who has faced the prospect of a separation or divorce has felt the extraordinary pressures that it causes. Most of the pressure… Read More

GoransonBain Blog- Social Security

Does Social Security Incentivize Divorce?

The original concept behind the Social Security program was to blunt the increasing risks of poverty to the average American worker by providing a modest form of “social insurance” after reaching the age of 65. By 1934, America was in the throes of the longest and most severe economic depression in its history and millions… Read More

Addiction: Not just a Hollywood Problem

The tragic death of actor Phillip Seymour Hoffman due to an apparent overdose of heroin has highlighted the complex issue of addiction and relapse, particularly to opioids. Opioids, whether they are prescription painkillers such as Vicodin or Percocet, or heroin, are extremely addictive, making recovery difficult and relapse easy.  Hoffman’s death was so shocking because… Read More

Parenting and Living with a Special Needs Child: The Unimagined Life

Dallas Family Attorneys want you to meet Isaac Lufkin. As a freshman place kicker for his Rhode Island football team the “Classics,” he helped the team to an undefeated season and freshman football state title. Like many football players his age, Isaac dreams of playing in the National Football League (NFL). Unlike many football players his age,… Read More

Collaborative Law

Collaborative Family Law: Is It for You?

The collaborative law process is an alternative to litigating family disputes such as divorce, child custody, and child support. Instead of taking the disputes to court, the parties involved sign a “collaborative law participation agreement” that sets forth the guidelines and ground rules of the process. The agreement also sets up a structure of time… Read More

High Conflict Family Law Matters and Personality Disorders

The majority of the cases in family law courts that require court intervention involve an intense, high level of conflict. In almost every high conflict case, you will find at least one party who has a high conflict personality that is driving the litigation train. Unfortunately, the high conflict personalities that most often appear in family law cases are often not recognized by the professionals involved in the case. And, even if the high conflict personality is recognized, many professionals fail to understand how to manage the high conflict case and implement the actions needed to stop or at least minimize any further destruction by the high conflict driven client. Instead, attorneys, judges, mental health professionals and mediators have a tendency to handle the case from the viewpoint of how clients ought to behave rather than understanding how it really is. As professionals, we often want the parties to just find a way to get along. However, because the high level of conflict observed in a family law case is often an extension of the conflict that existed in the marriage that was driven by a party with a high conflict personality, it is unrealistic for any of the professionals to think the conflict is going to stop because the parties have separated and a divorce action has been filed. In fact, many, if not most, the high conflict people will stay in the high conflict cycle their entire life.

Protect your credit

6 Ways To Protect Your Credit in a Divorce

Your credit score and ability to obtain credit can have a significant impact on your life post divorce. It can impact your ability to qualify for a new credit card, car loan or home loan, or your ability to refinance an existing home loan or obtain a line of credit. Run your credit report during… Read More

GoransonBain Blog- Financial assistance

Divorce Can Mean Hard Financial Times; Plan To Keep Yourself in the Black

The time you spend going through a divorce, along with the immediate aftermath, can be one of the most financially challenging periods of your life. Often, this difficulty comes when you are least able to deal with it, considering the emotional strains of divorce. Yet, with a solid financial strategy and an experienced family law… Read More

GoransonBain blog- Home equity

Home Equity and Your Divorce: What You Need To Know

Marriage is an economic relationship as much as a social one. In a divorce, fairly dividing marital assets is one of the most important concerns. Equity in a home is the difference between the market value of the real estate and the amount still owed against it on a mortgage. Equity in a shared home… Read More

Goranson Bain - kids first

How To Tell Your Children You Are Getting Divorced: 5 Tips

As a family law attorney and a marriage and family therapist, we have seen many examples, both good and bad, of the impact of divorce on children. Over the years, we have gained some insight into how to alleviate some of the more troubling aspects of divorce on children by creating an atmosphere where the children can flourish. Below are some tips.

Preparing Your Client For The Social Psychological Or Home Study

The child custody evaluation is often the most critical piece of evidence in a contested custody case. The results of a child custody evaluation can make or break a client’s case. Preparation can make a tremendous difference in not only how the evaluator sees your client but also in the recommendations made by the evaluation. Most clients, however, are poorly informed about the significance and process of a child custody evaluation and therefore are ill prepared for it.

Substance Abuse Cases What Every Attorney Should Know About Drug And Alcohol Testing

In a family law case, it is common for one party to accuse the opposing party of substance abuse. As a result, drug/alcohol testing has become a commonplace tool used to determine (1) the accuracy of substance abuse allegations; and (2) issues related to custody and visitation. When used properly, drug/alcohol testing is a valuable tool. Armed with the proper information, drug/alcohol testing can then be used to provide evidence of drug use and non-compliance with court orders or abstinence and compliance with court orders. Unfortunately, Judges and attorneys are often uninformed regarding the technical nuances of the various testing methods, which results in drug/alcohol testing that is inappropriate to the specific circumstances of the case.

The Financial Implications Of Divorce In Texas

As the nation slowly recovers from one of the worst recessions in its history, many people are concerned about how divorce may affect their finances. However, there are options available to help people keep down the costs of divorce and to emerge from divorce with a clear understanding of their assets and debt obligations. While… Read More

Goranson Bain- Baby Boomer Divorce

The Gray Divorce: Baby Boomers Are Ending Marriages Later in Life

News this summer that the 40-year marriage of Al and Tipper Gore is coming to an end underscores a recent trend in American matrimony: couples who have made it through decades of family rearing and career building are parting ways in unprecedented numbers. American baby boomers are splitting up at three times the rate of… Read More

The Great Recession And Its Impact On Divorce

 The current recession appears to be affecting divorce rates, which had declined, but now may be on the rise. A recent study suggests finances may play the larger role in determining whether a couple stays together. “The Survey of Marital Generosity” from the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia indicates that the financial… Read More

The Mentally Incompetent Party

Beth E. Maultsby Goranson Bain, PLLC 8350 N. Central Expwy., Suite 1700 Dallas, Texas 75206 (214) 373-7676 Fax: (214) 373-9959 State Bar of Texas 36th Annual Advanced Family Law Course August 9-12, 2010 San Antonio Chapter 45 Background, Education and Practice Beth has been helping families for more than 30 years as a judge, lawyer… Read More

Why A Pre Nuptial Agreement Is An Expression Of Love

The annual Valentine’s Day holiday is a reminder of how much importance we place on letting our significant others know how much we care about them. The well-prepared have already made romantic dinner reservations, bought flowers, bought candy, bought jewelry – or some combination of those traditional gestures – while the not-so-well-prepared will be hitting… Read More

Paternity rights under Texas family law

If you are a male in Texas who is not married to the birth mother of a child, you may confront legal hurdles in your attempt to establish rights related to child custody, child visitation or other family law issues. This is because there are some legal presumptions for women under Texas law, which do… Read More

Drug Testing 2013

Tom Greenwald Drug Testing – Use and Defense State Bar of Texas 2012 Advanced Family Law Course (Excerpts) Seven Tips and Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Drug Testing in Divorce Cases and Other Family Law Cases Will I know in advance that the opposing party or opposing attorney is going to ask the judge for me… Read More

Preparation For Your Deposition And Court Testimony

Tom Greenwald Board Certified – Family Law Texas Board of Legal Specialization Goranson Bain, PLLC 6900 N. Central Expressway, Suite 400 Plano, Texas 75024 (214) 473-9696 tgreenwald@gbfamilylaw.com www.goransonbain.com A. INTRODUCTION You are about to give sworn testimony, either by deposition in an attorney’s office or in the courtroom. This information is presented in an effort… Read More

Is your spouse hiding assets during your divorce?

Even when both spouses are fully cooperative, divorce is often one of the most stressful, difficult experiences that people go through in their lives. When one spouse resorts to trickery and dishonesty, however, the divorce process can be harder still. Unfortunately, perhaps because of the high stakes and surging emotions that divorce often involves, divorcing… Read More

Equity and divorce: dividing the home

In general, Texas divides a divorcing couple’s existing property into two basic categories: community property and separate property. Under property division laws, individuals are able to retain separate property pursuant to a divorce. This might include property owned before the union, property that was a personal gift or an inheritance to one party during the… Read More