Rosales Law Firm
Get Legal Advice Today : 915-219-5516

El Paso Legal Blog

Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner officially end marriage

Not everyone in Texas pays attention to celebrity couples and their marital woes. However, the situation involving Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner is a perfect example of the circumstances that can determine the direction a relationship takes. The two stars met while making the 2003 film "Daredevil" together. After dating for a few years, the actors tied the knot in 2005. Following a decade together, the award-winning stars decided to separate in 2015, reportedly because of Affleck's infidelity.

After submitting the required paperwork in Los Angeles, the couple's marriage officially ended in divorce three years after their separation. The couple agreed to share joint custody of their three children. They also agreed to visit a co-parenting therapist together for a minimum of six months. While it is common for celebrities to have prenuptial agreements, Affleck and Garner did not have such a document. Instead, the two stars worked out a mutually acceptable property settlement.

The Presumption of Innocence and Coping with Felony Charges

The justice system in the United States of America is built upon the founding principles outlined in the Declaration of Independence. We all know these by heart: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It is precisely because of America's reverence to individual freedom that our justice system hinges upon the presumption of innocence. This principle is an individual right guaranteed to every person in the United States and it asserts that an accused person is, in fact, innocent until proven guilty. There are standards for this too. Guilt must be proven beyond a reasonable doubt. This entails corroborating evidence, witnesses, and a factual case. The burden of proof is on the accuser and they have the task of proving to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that the accusations are substantial and based on truth.

2 men arrested after police drug raids

Police in Texas arrested two people, seizing guns and drugs, after they carried out search warrants in two separate homes in Temple. On Oct. 31, they searched one home, where they say they found 2 grams of methamphetamine, 5 ounces of marijuana, over 40 Xanax pills and more than 500 ecstasy pills. They also found $3,000 in cash and a Glock 42 handgun, confiscating both. According to police, the drugs had a street value of $17,000. The sole person in the home at the time was arrested and taken to the Bell County Sheriff's Office.

On the same day, police also searched another home in Temple. There, they said that they found 180 grams of powder cocaine, 262 grams of crystal methamphetamine, 21 grams of black tar heroin and unspecified amounts of ecstasy and cannabis. In addition, police confiscated $3,500 in cash as well as several weapons: an AK pistol, a Glock 23 handgun, a Kahr 380 handgun, a Taurus 38 special and a Smith and Wesson 9mm handgun. Again, only one person was present in the home, and he was taken to the Bell County jail. The drugs found in the house had a reported street value of $55,600.

Who will get the dog when you divorce?

Like many families, you have a dog that is part of the family. You may take the dog on vacation, allow it to sleep in your bed and perhaps even include the dog in your family portraits. If you have no children or your children are grown, the dog may be especially important to you.

Unfortunately, the laws in Texas and most other states view pets as property, so if you and your spouse are preparing to divorce, you may have a difficult choice to make regarding your furry companion.

Pre-marital cohabitation and the odds of divorce

Many couples file for divorce in Texas every year. According to research from multiple studies, partners who live together prior to tying the knot are actually more likely to file for divorce than those who wait until marriage to move in together. A recent study examined how the "premarital cohabitation effect" may affect a married couple's odds of divorce in the long term.

Data was collected from United States women ages 44 and younger who were in their first marriages between 1970 to 1995. Previous research found that the odds of divorce are initially decreased for couples who resided together before marriage. However, the new study found that the odds of divorce increased for each subsequent year of being wed.

Utah lowers BAC limit

Drunk driving is a common cause of car accidents in Texas. In most states, the legal limit for blood alcohol content is .08 percent. Utah is about to become the first state to lower the legal BAC limit to .05 percent.

Drunk drivers are responsible for about 29 fatal accidents per day in the United States. The yearly cost of accidents related to drunk driving is estimated to total over $44 billion. Statistics from the National Transportation Safety Board show that the risk of a fatal crash is seven times higher for drivers with a BAC level of .05 to .079.

How child support payments work when joint custody is involved

Arrangements for child support payments in Texas can become more complex if joint custody is part of the equation. But before custody agreements are discussed, decisions have to be made about legal and physical custody as well as parenting time. In every state except Kentucky, negotiations have to take place in order to achieve equal shared parenting that can serve as a starting point for custody. Without joint custody, the non-custodial parent won't be able to do things like make health care decisions for their child or even see their report card.

After custody arrangements are made, it's advised that child support be based on a fair level based on the circumstances, which means it shouldn't be an unfair burden to one parent. The general recommendation is that child support to not exceed more than $500 a month per parent. If parenting time is equal, there may be no need for child support at all. While state guidelines are based on a percentage of a parent's come, they don't necessarily take realistic earning and spending needs into consideration.

How tax law will influence divorce

Texas residents who are going through a divorce will need to learn a new set of tax rules related to being a single filer. For instance, an ex-spouse with children may benefit more from being able to claim the Head of Household (HOH) designation on their tax return. A parent qualifies if they had a dependent living in their home more than 50 percent of the time.

Furthermore, that parent would need to have paid for more than 50 percent of the household expenses. Those who are eligible for HOH status may also claim a child tax credit that is worth up to $2,000. While the credit was eligible to be traded in the past, it is not clear if this is the case now. Ideally, a parent will write into their divorce agreement that they will trade it if it is deemed permissible in the future.

I don't agree with my child support order; what can I do?

Financially supporting one's children is every parent's responsibility. Divorce does not change that. The court will likely issue a child support order, and one must pay the amount listed in that order on time. What happens, though, if, as the paying or receiving parent, you disagree with the amount awarded in the order of support? Can you fight it?

The state of Texas does allow parents to appeal a court's decision when it comes to child support. Doing so may or may not have positive results -- there are never any guarantees that it will work.

Texas man handed life sentence for third DWI since 2004

A Texas man convicted on Sept. 25 of his third drunk driving offense since 2004 decided to let the jury hearing his case determine his fate. This is a decision he is likely to regret. A Galveston County jury could have sentenced the man to 25 years in prison, but they chose to hand down a life sentence instead. The man will become eligible for parole after he has served 15 years of his sentence, according to the Galveston District Attorney's Office.

Officers from the Santa Fe Police Department say that they discovered the man asleep in his SUV. They say that the vehicle was found in a bar parking lot with its engine running. Officers had been dispatched to the area after concerned motorists had called 911 about an erratic driver. They told emergency operators about an SUV swerving across the center line and narrowly avoiding an oncoming car.

1400 Montana Avenue
El Paso, TX 79902

Toll Free: 888-352-0467
Phone: 915-219-5516
Fax: 915-542-0878
Map & Directions