Recently passed HB 867 & 851 will put limits on the amounts individuals seeking to modify the amount of maintenance (aka "alimony") a former spouse will be able to get.
The new law, which takes effect on September 1, 2021, says that an individual "may not increase maintenance to an amount or duration that exceeds the amount or remaining duration of the original maintenance order." (TFC 8.057(c)).
The new law essentially makes it impossible to increase the amount of court-ordered maintenance in the future and makes it impossible to extent the period of the maintenance award.
This is yet another example of how disfavored the concept of post-divorce payments to former spouses is in Texas. Also, this change in the law should be carefully observed by parties who are contemplating contractual alimony and who may be considering a lesser amount in the hopes they can modify it to a higher amount in the future. Do not believe anyone who tells you that you can always ask for more in the future. This new law will prevent that. What you agree to now ,in both amount and duration, will remain the most you can get through the Texas courts.
Also note that this new limitation applies regardless of whether the order was rendered before, on, or after September 1, 2021.
If you are involved in, or a thinking about, a League City divorce and you have any questions about spousal maintenance, please reach out to us.
If you are finalizing your divorce soon, you'll want to pay attention! HB 3772 has passed and has changed the law on final decrees of divorce in Texas.
Starting September 1, 2021 there is an additional requirement that must be included in your final decree. All final decrees in the State of Texas must now include the date of marriage.
Texas Family Code 6.712 states:
(a) In a suit for dissolution of a marriage in which the court grants a divorce, the court shall state the date of the marriage in the decree of divorce.
However, this requirement is not required in the case of divorces of informal marriages ("common law marriages"). The new law provides:
(b) this section does not apply to a suit for dissolution of a marriage described by section 2.401(a)(2).
If you are experiencing a League City Divorce or need to consult with a League City attorney for any other family law related matter, feel free to reach out to us.
On Saturday, July 10, 2021, the Galveston County Justice Center at 600 59th Street in Galveston, Texas experienced a small fire, which though contained to a small area, produced water damage in several Courts and other facility areas.
The latest update is that the repairs and renovations to the facility are expected to take a couple of months before the facilities are fully functional.
Beginning Monday, July 19, 2021, the District Courts and County Courts at Law will resume their court dockets.
The County Courts at Law will have exclusive use of the constitutional courtroom on the fourth floor to conduct daily court operations on designated days.
The District Courts will utilize the three unaffected courtrooms on the fourth floor on a rotating schedule.
All courts have agreed that criminal defendants are not required to appear in person until August 9, 2021.
The misdemeanor jail docket will continue to be held in the afternoons at 1:00 PM.
The family associate judge’s docket will resume on Monday, July 26, 2021 in the jury assembly room on the first floor of the Justice Center.
The hearings for this past week and next week will be rescheduled by court coordinators.
All Justice Center jury trials are suspended until the week of September 27, 2021.
Attorney Sean Y. Palmer has over 19 years of legal experience as a Texas Attorney and over 25 years as a Qualified Mediator in civil, family and CPS cases. Palmer practices exclusively in the area Family Law and handles Divorce, Child Custody, Child Support, Adoptions, and other Family Law Litigation cases. He represents clients throughout the greater Houston Galveston area, including: Clear Lake, NASA, Webster, Friendswood, Seabrook, League City, Galveston, Texas City, Dickinson, La Porte, La Marque, Clear Lake Shores, Bacliff, Kemah, Pasadena, Baytown, Deer Park, Harris County, and Galveston County, Texas.