Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Divorce Handbook by TX Young Lawyers On-Line for Free

A Texas divorce handbook was written several years ago by the Texas Young Lawyers Association in 2010.

Web site located at

Look under - Resources then look for General Public then look for Family Law publications  & scroll down --  it is under "pro se divorce" (a small gray booklet that is several pages long)

It is kind of "buried" on their website -- but it is a pretty good booklet & has pretty good free Texas forms for pro se litigants.

The forms were prepared 2 legislative sessions ago so they might not be completely current (I have not reviewed them to see if they are current) but they are going to be better than the out-of-state kits sold on the internet & at office supply stores.  Additionally, it will show you how the forms should appear and how the Texas judges want the forms to look like in their courtrooms.

Do not just print the forms & fill them in.

You need to just use these forms as a sample & then prepare the forms on letter size paper!

Do not "scratch out" or leave blanks -- judges do not like blanks!

You need to fill out the forms completely & accurately.

Remember, you and your family are going to have to follow the orders that the judge signs. These are important forms so don't take these forms lightly.

You and your ex are ORDERED by the judge to follow the instructions in these legal documents.

These are not merely "suggestions" by the judge.  These are court orders by a judge.  You can be held in contempt of court by the judge.  CONTEMPT means that you can be FINED hundreds of dollars and/or jailed if you do not follow the judge's orders.  So, if you don't understand what these forms say, I highly recommend hiring an attorney to help you.

In the long run, trying to save money could end up costing you thousands of dollars in a couple of years trying to "fix the mess" that you have made trying to save a couple of hundred of dollars!

I just did a mediation and found a mistake in the paperwork.  The man had not carefully read his paperwork before signing.  Neither had the TX A G attorney because it was a typo. (I don't know if his ex-wife and her attorney knew or not. ) The man had been overpaying his child support by $200/month for 3 years!  It had been simple math error!  He had not hired an attorney because he thought he could not afford it!  It cost him $7,200! OUCH!

It's a lot like my plumber told me years ago -- he loved "macho men" that tried to fix their plumbing themselves -- he got to charge them a lot more because they "always" mess it up then their wives called him on Monday morning when their house was a total mess -- he said I actually saved myself a lot of money because I called him on a Thursday at the first sign of trouble & I let him do his "magic" !

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