Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
Se Habla Español Nous Parlons Français
Call 713-574-7952 or 888-572-6059
888-572-6059

In spousal support matters, precision with terms is critical

Some wise person once said, "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Depending on whom you choose to go with, that person was either an ancient Greek historian or old Wild West legend, Wyatt Earp. For the purposes of this blog, we'll go with Earp. He's someone with whom most Texans can better identify.

Fast is often the way we want things when we're going through a life change such as divorce. However, being too hasty has a way of coming back to haunt one or both of the parties unless care is exercised. Rights protection related to spousal or child support and child custody is not something to gloss over. To be sure that base is covered, working with experienced counsel is recommended.

Whether the issues are family law matters or business transactions, experts will agree that if terms aren't crafted with attention to the details, legal problems may well arise later. For evidence, one need look no further than a Texas Court of Appeals decision from a few months ago. At the heart of the ruling on spousal support is the question over what constitutes remarriage.

The case involves the divorce of British couple. The husband is quite wealthy. According to court documents, the man agreed to pay his ex-wife $389,000 a year. Support would end if she remarried. The woman subsequently moved to Texas where she began cohabitating with a new partner.

According to the ex-husband's complaint, the cohabitation amounted to a common law marriage, something Texas law recognizes. The ex-husband asserted that his ex-wife and her partner held themselves out to be a married couple, even going so far as to state they were married on a foreign hotel registration. As such, he argued, he should be released from his spousal support obligations.

The ex-wife and her partner, though, submitted documentary evidence to show that the couple had never agreed to marry. Indeed, all the evidence they provided indicated that she is a divorced woman paying taxes as a single person.

The appeals court majority dismissed the case saying there was no evidence of remarriage.

One legal analysis of this situation states that it shows the importance of clarity in divorce decrees. It says the dispute might have been avoided if the decree had identified in detail the conditions under which spousal support or alimony could be terminated.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information

Client Testimonials

  1. Laura Dale the best Family Law attorney I have ever met... Posted by John...Listens, takes your calls, tells you the truth (even when it may not be what you want to hear)... Read More

  2. The Best...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura Dale handled my international child custody and divorce matter. I am an attorney in Houston and was referred to her... Read More

  3. A Meticulous, Knowledgeable, Attorney with Heart...Posted by a Child Custody client... Laura was not the first attorney that my husband and I interviewed for an extremely complex... Read More

  4. Top Notch, Hands Down - The Best...Posted by Tammi, a Child Custody client... Laura Dale has been absolutely the best attorney I could have found for my difficult child custody... Read More

Contact Our Experienced Team Today | Se habla español | Nous parlons français

Due to the experience our lawyers have in many specialized areas, you can rely on us to put together the right team to handle your case, even if it centers on complex issues such as international family law, business valuation or bankruptcy. Contact us today to make an appointment to discuss your needs with a knowledgeable lawyer.

Laura Dale & Associates, P.C.
1800 Saint James Pl.
Suite 620
Houston, TX 77056

Toll Free: 888-572-6059
Phone: 713-574-7952
Fax: 713-600-1718
Houston Office Location

Review Us