4567 new law – Personal Injury / Bicycles / Child Custody,Support,Paternity / Divorce / Community Property / Car Accident / Hiring an Attorney / Amputation Accident / Estate Planning – gtg

Rules of the Road & Cycling Etiquette

Most of us have all ridden with a someone who we would consider a novice, newbie, rookie, etc. These can actually be the most dangerous rides you go on. If you or your fellow riders do not know the “Rules of the Road – Cycling Etiquette” then someone can get injured. Many of us have learned these simple rules over time and through experience. We know them as the “Unwritten Rules.” While it is impossible to actually write down every unwritten rule – here is a list of common rules we should all be aware of and that can help prevent injury.

Helmets are required and NO headphones. I think the helmet part of this rule is self explanatory. When you wear headphones you are not only endangering yourself, but others who are on the ride. By listening to the sounds of traffic you can often sense danger while you have time to react. Or you can hear your fellow cyclists call out debris in the road, etc. This is a hard one for some of you out there… but trust me, no head phones is much more safe.
Obey all regulatory signs and traffic signals. Bicycles are considered vehicles by law and must be driven like other vehicles if they are to be taken seriously by motorists. As tempting as it is to burn right through a red light, you are just asking to become another injury statistic sooner or later.
Be predictable. Maintain a steady straight line and avoid braking or changing direction suddenly. Rookies are very unpredictable. As a cyclist hold a straight line – this helps your fellow cyclist know how to maneuver around you as well as vehicle traffic. Remember that there are riders following you closely from behind. To slow down, gradually apply your brakes and say “slowing” while using hand signals as well if possible. Many will hold a clinched fist behind their back to indicate slowing.
Point out and call out any road hazards ahead. Far too many accidents happen because 1 cyclist in a group fails to call out and point out a hazard. These are dangerous accidents and for the most part can be completely avoided! Some of the people I care most about have been in serious accidents simply because a fellow cyclist in front of them failed to call out a hazard. Hazards can include potholes, drain grates, stray animals, opening car doors, sticks or stones, parked cars, garbage cans, etc. There are also hand signals for this.
left arm straight out to signal a left turn
right arm straight out for a right turn
palm or fist behind your lower back to signal slowing or stopping
shake hand side to side in the direction of sand, glass or any other road hazard
Do not overlap wheels. You never know when a slight direction change or gust of wind could easily cause you to touch wheels with another cyclist and fall. Advanced riders pedal down hill when at the front of the bunch. Experienced cyclists dislike having to ride under brakes (the riders following the leader benefit from his draft, thereby having to pedal less and brake more). Again hold a straight line and be predictable.
Pass on the left and call it out. Stay to the right when in front to allow room for others to pass safely on your left. Pass other riders on the left hand side whenever possible. Always call out to the riders you are passing that you are passing them. Most say: “On your left.” This will avoid someone turning into you while passing.
No drafting until you have the skills and experience. Riding in a close group (drafting) is a skill that is best learned in small groups with other cyclists that know how and will teach you. Even drafting in a small group with a rookie can be deadly if that rookie is leading and fails to call out debris, or if that rookies is in the back listening to headphones and fails to hear a “slowing” call, etc. My point is drafting can be very dangerous. If you are new to the sport then take the time to learn how to draft in a small group first and be careful.
When climbing hills, avoid following a wheel too closely. Many riders often lose their momentum when rising out of the saddle on a hill which can cause a sudden deceleration. This can often catch a rider who is following too closely, resulting in a fall from a wheel touch.
Watch for turning vehicles and vehicles exiting driveways. Make eye contact with drivers. Assume they do not see you until you are sure they do. I always waive to the driver and make sure I get some sort of head nod or waiver back before I proceed in front of them. As irritating as it is to wait for them to acknowledge me, its better than getting hit.
Avoid road hazards. I know this goes without saying, but watch for storm drain grates, slippery manhole covers, oily pavement, gravel and ice. Cross railroad tracks at right angles. For better control as you move across bumps and other hazards, stand up on your pedals.
Be prepared. At a minimum your bike should be in good repair and have dependable tires. Ride with the right gear – whether that is warm gear for cold weather, goggles, rain jacket, etc. Wear bright colored clothing during the day and light-colored or reflective clothing at night. Always use a strong headlight and tail light and good reflectors when riding at night as required by law. Make sure to bring a few dollars cash at all times for a taxi ride home if necessary, a snack, re-fills on fluid, etc.
Know your route and share it with a friend. Its always best to know ahead of time where you are going and to share that route with a family member or friend. This is especially true if you are riding solo.
Bring a cell phone. Your cell phone can be a life save if you are in a wreck, or you get lost, or need to be picked up. Most smart phones have mapping and camera capabilities. These are invaluable, especially the ability to take a photo of any accidents you witness or are involved in.
While there are many more “Rules of the Road” that can not be included here we welcome them as comments to this post. Additionally there are some commonly used commands in this sport you should familiarize yourself with:

“Hold your Line” You need to stay in a straight line as best you can. In most cases, the person yelling this out to you is attempting to pass or warn you your riding is not steady and predictable. If you swing out or don’t keep your bike steady, you could cause the other bicyclist trouble or injury.
“On your Left” Another rider is passing you on your left. No need to take this personally. Let them pass as they have the right of way. You should never hear “On your Right”. That is, a cyclist should never pass on the right. However, there are many cyclists with varying experience. Be on the lookout for those that will pass on your right. If someone does this, kindly remind him or her that they should pass on the left. Also, it is common courtesy to say “Thank You” to the person yelling “on your left”. This indicates to them that you’ve heard them.
“Car Up” There is a car just ahead, and a stop may be necessary. If you hear this, repeat the call so that others know that you are aware of the vehicle up front. It is also common courtesy to repeat this so that others behind you also know about the car.
“Car Back” There is a car back behind you, probably trying to pass, and you should gently steer to the right side of the road. If you hear this, repeat the call so that others know that you are aware of the vehicle is behind you. It is also common courtesy to repeat this so that others in front of you also know about the car.

“Stopping” There is something that is causing the pack to slow down. This can be anything from a stop-light, a slower pack of bikes, or a car up ahead. In any event, prepare to stop. It’s VERY important NOT to slam on your brakes especially if there are others behind you!
If you are involved in a citation or an accident related to cycling don’t hesitate to call us.

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Family law ===Texas Family Law, Divorce, Child Custody, Child Support, Visitation, Alimony, Community Property, Child Custody Issues in Family Law in the state of Texas all persons under the age of 18 are considered minors with respect to Texas family law.

Child custody and visitation issues

Child custody issues in Texas family law can result by way of the initiation of dissolution of marriage proceedings (divorce), legal separation, annulment, or paternity proceedings. Child custody issues can arise even if the parties are not legally separated, but living apart.

There are several classifications of child custody in the state of Texas such as; Sole legal and physical custody, primary physical and legal custody, joint physical and legal custody, and no right to custody.

With respect to marriages, the father or the mother are equally entitled to custody of the minor children of the marriage, before a court ordered is entered. If you are contemplating a divorce, filing for divorce, legal separation, or living apart, it is very important to obtain court orders which articulate your rights to child custody as soon as possible. Without court orders, a child who is let’s say is living with the mother, (or father) could be legally taken by the other parent absent court orders. If you have minor children of the marriage, it is important to file an order to show cause for child custody along with any petition for dissolution of marriage, or legal separation paperwork, so that you can get a court order articulates your rights to child custody.

The court primarily focuses on what’s in the child’s best interests when it determines who is entitled to what type of custody of a minor child of the marriage. Although it sounds simple, child custody and visitation issues with respect to Texas law are quite complicated, and should not be litigated without the help of an experienced attorney.

In the old days it was thought that children should be with their mother. However, modernly the court looks at many factors in determining who gets what type of custody of minor children. If you are a mother, you should not assume that you will automatically get custody of the children. If you’re a father, you have an equal chance of getting primary custody of the children.

Entire law books have been written on the subject of child custody.

If you have a child custody issues in Texas and want a free consultation on your case, give our law firm a call.

Child support issues

The parents of minor children are legally responsible to provide support for their minor children, even if the child is conceived out of wedlock. Children who were born in the course of a marriage, are presumed to be the children of the parties in the marriage.

Ordinarily, one parent will be ordered to pay child support to the other parent depending upon many factors. These factors include but are not limited to: (1) who has custody of the minor child or children, and for what percentage of time, (2) each parent’s average and current income, and (3) any expenses and hardship deductions.

As you can see, child custody is intimately intertwined with child support.

Child support cannot be retroactively ordered by the courts in the state a Texas. Although each parent has a statutory duty to support their children, one parent can’t be forced to pay the other parent child support, unless they have obtained a court order for child support. In other words, if you snooze you lose.

If you’re a parent who has primary physical custody of your children, it is very important for you to go to court as soon as possible to obtain child support orders. Without said orders, you and your children are out of luck. In a perfect world, a responsible noncustodial parent would pay child support, however in reality, a court order is usually required to get the other parent to pay.

Once you obtain a child support order from the court, the court will in most cases put a wage garnishment on the parent who is to pay child support so that the money is taken right out of their paycheck.

In some cases parents might purposely try to avoid paying child support by quitting their jobs, or working under the table. In Texas the court can impute wages on to a person who is supposed to be paying child support, if the court finds that they are intentionally not working, or purposely working below their means.

When a person who is supposed to be paying child support falls behind on their child support payments, those child support payments that are behind are called arrearages. The parent who is owed the past-due arrearages can go into the court and request a contempt order, and an order that the parent owing past-due arrearages pay interest and penalties on the amounts due.

It should be noted that in the state of Texas and interest and penalties on past due child support payments can be quite substantial, and in some cases exceed the actual amount of child support.

If you’re a parent that owes child support, and your circumstances have changed such that you cannot pay the current amount of child support ordered by the court, you are going to need to go into the court as soon as possible to request a modification of existing child-support orders. If you fall too far behind on your child-support payments, your drivers license can be taken away, professional licenses can be suspended, and you could face potential criminal prosecution by the district attorney. As time goes by, interest and penalties will increase on the amount you owe such that I could take many years for you to pay off the amount owed. It is much more inexpensive to retain an attorney to protect your legal rights, rather than allowing the past two child-support owed to continue to increase.

Whether you want to establish child support, enforce child-support orders, modify existing child-support orders, or need to defend against a child-support action, our law firm can help you. For a free consultation regarding your child-support issue, call our office now.

paternity issues

Paternity in Texas law, means that you are the biological parent of a child. Ordinarily paternity issues revolve around a mother alleging that a man is the biological father of a child, or a man disputing that he is the biological father of a child.

In cases where a party is alleging that one person is a biological parent of a child, and the parties are not married, paternity needs to be established, before the court can order child support payments and or visitation rights.

For persons wishing to establish paternity so that they can receive support for a child, a petition to establish paternity must be filed, unless the other party agrees that the child is theirs.

For persons wishing to dispute paternity, they have to timely oppose a petition to establish paternity, and request that a DNA test be done.

Our law firm can help you whether you want to establish paternity so that you could receive child support payments, or if you want to dispute paternity of a child. Call now for free consultation.

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Going through a divorce is arguably one of the worst things you’ll have to go through in your life. Emotionally, going through a divorce is analogous to go into a death in the family. The proper term for a divorce in the state of Texas is “dissolution of marriage.”

The difference between a divorce and legal separation, is that in a divorce, formal dissolution of marriage paperwork has been filed with the court to terminate the marriage, whereas a legal separation can occur either by filing papers for legal separation with the court, or by one of the parties in a marriage deciding to separate with the intent to permanently end the marriage. It should be noted that a legal separation can occur even if the parties still live together.

The difference between a divorce and an annulment, is that in the case of an annulment, the marriage is either void, voidable, or not legal from its inception. In most cases it’s much more difficult to obtain an annulment, then a divorce.

A divorce involves the legal termination of a marriage by court order. A divorce is not final in Texas until a court of competent jurisdiction issues an order stating that the marriage has been terminated.

In Texas, there are two types of dissolution of marriage proceedings are available; (1) Summary dissolution of marriage, and (2) Standard dissolution of marriage. Most marriages will not qualify for the summary dissolution of marriage procedure that is available in Texas.

Marriages can be contested proceedings, uncontested, or by way of a default judgment when one of the parties cannot be located, or refuses to participate in the proceeding.

Texas is one of the so-called “no-fault” divorce states. The most common ground for requesting a divorce in the state of Texas, is irreconcilable differences. A party can also request a divorce on the grounds of death, or insanity.

The most common issues involved in a divorce case in the state a Texas are: dissolution of marriage, child custody, child visitation, child support, alimony which is actually known as spousal support in Texas, family support, the division of community property (please see the property issues page on this web site), determination of separate property, the division and/or allocation of community businesses, and the division and/or allocation of retirement plans.

Due to the complex nature of family law litigation in the state of Texas, we highly recommend retaining an attorney to represent you. Our law firm can represent you in your divorce proceeding, and all the issues related thereto. Our law firm can also provide limited representation for you with respect to certain issues related to your family Law case. We can even do document preparation for you if you decide not to retain an attorney.

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Community Property

Texas is a community property state. All property that is purchased or acquired during marriage, or transmuted (converted) to community property during marriage is community property.

The husband and wife in a marriage, each own an undivided one half interest in all community property of the marriage.

Community property is not divided, unless divorce proceedings are initiated, or upon the death of either the husband or wife.

Community property can be either real property or personal property. Community property can also be businesses, pension plans, or any other type of tangible thing that is acquired during marriage.

Community property is ordinarily one of the major issues involved in divorce actions. If you would like to learn more about your rights to community property in a divorce action give us a call now for our free consultation.

Quasi Community Property

Quasi community property is property that is acquired outside of the state of Texas during marriage. Although married couples may have purchased property in a state that is not a community property state like Texas, the property will basically be treated as though it were community property for purposes division in a divorce action in the state of Texas.

For more information you may call us for free consultation.

Businesses

Businesses that were started during a marriage are community property.

In some instances a person may have owned an existing business before they were married, and continue the business after marriage. In a divorce action, the courts will allocate a percentage of value to the business “after marriage” to determine which portion of the business is community property.

If you owned an existing business before marriage, it is extremely important for you to consult with an attorney in a divorce action as soon as possible.

We are here for you. Call us now for free consultation.

Pensions

Any portion of Pensions, IRA’s, 401(k)s, Retirement plans, etc., that were contributed during marriage are community property.

Ordinarily the funds from pension plans are not obtainable until the pension plan vests and the matures. Therefore special orders are necessary from the court so that each party is able to get their portion of any retirement plan after it matures and vests. These orders are ordinarily called qualified domestic relations orders or QDRO’s for short.

Obviously parties to a divorce have a vested interest in ensuring that they get their fair portion of any pension or retirement plans after a divorce. If you’re involved in a divorce call us now for a free consultation.

Community Income, Bank Accounts, Stock, and Investments

All income earned during a marriage is considered community income. This is true even in one of the parties to a marriage earns money in a business that was theirs prior to marriage. Community income is the same as community property, in that each party owns a one half undivided interest in community income.

Each party to the marriage has a right to spend and use community income, even if they are not the one that earned the money. However, after legal separation or the initiation of divorce proceedings, parties may only use community property for the necessities of life and to pay their attorney.

Likewise, any bank accounts, stock, and/or investments that are acquired during the marriage are also community property. This is true even if the bank account, stock, and/or investment is only in the name of one of the parties.

Some parties try to secret money into separate bank accounts during marriage, and/or hide assets there were acquired during marriage from the other party.

If you are a party in a divorce action, you have what is called a fiduciary duty of disclosure. What this means is that you must disclose all assets, bank accounts, and other of the investments that were acquired during the marriage to the other party. If you fail to fully disclose your assets and/or income to the court and the other party, the court could severely punish you.

You may have read about the case where a wife won the lottery, and then initiated divorce proceedings against her husband. She failed to inform the court and her husband about the fact that she won the lottery. As punishment for her failure to disclose the fact that she won the lottery, the court gave her husband the entire amount of the lottery winnings.

Is very important that you consult with an attorney with regards to the issues articulated above. You may call us for a free consultation.

Separate Property

Separate property is all property that was acquired before marriage; during marriage by devise, will, or inheritance; and after legal separation. The proceeds from a personal-injury judgment or settlement are also separate property, even if they were received during marriage.

Upon the court making a finding that property is separate property, the person owning said separate property will leave the marriage with their separate property.

Separate property can be transmuted (converted) to community property by intent, or by inadvertence. For instance, a party may have a separate bank account before marriage that would be considered separate property. If the party then takes income that was earned during marriage and deposits that money into their separate bank account, they may have by inadvertence converted that bank account to community property.

Obviously, parties in a divorce proceeding will most likely want to keep their own separate property after the divorce is over. It is very important for you to contact an attorney with regard to the issue of separate property to ensure that you get to keep her separate property after the divorce. We are here to help. For a free consultation call our office.

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Instructions to Clients family law matters

Family Law matters

It is very important that you keep us informed with your current contact information at all times.

Family Law cases are usually highly emotional to all parties involved including your children if you have children.

It has been said that going through a divorce or custody battle is just as bad as going through a death in the family, or even worse.

It may seem to you like your life is never going to be the same while going through a divorce or child custody case, however, life goes on. You will eventually get through the divorce or custody battle, and your life will go on.

As hard as it may be, it is very important that you try to remain calm and cordial throughout the process of going through a family law matter. We have seen many cases where the slightest “words” result in physical violence and one or both of the parties ending up being arrested and put in jail on domestic violence charges.

It is important that you gather as much evidence for your case as possible such as: (originals are best, photocopies will do)

Deeds to Real Property

Receipts for Purchases of Goods

Pictures of Real Property and purchases Goods

Copies of Tax Returns for the past 3 years

Wage Statements and W2’s for the past 12 months

Birth Certificates and

Pension Plan, IRA, or 401k documents

Pre-Nuptial Agreements, etc.

Each party can dispose of Community Property (“Property that was acquired during marriage or transmuted to Community Property) for the necessities of life, and to pay their attorney only. If you are contemplating “cleaning out” your joint checking account, or selling community property, please call us. You may be held to account for your actions, and the Community Estate may be entitled to reimbursement for what you have taken.

Each party has a fiduciary duty (legal obligation) of full disclosure to the other party. This means that you must provide full disclosure to the other party on certain matters related to the marriage such as property, assets, and the children. Failing to disclose something that you have a duty to disclose or intentionally misrepresenting a fact during the dissolution process, can and will adversely affect your case. If you have any questions, please call us.

Once a divorce action is filed and served, there are mutual automatic retraining orders placed on each party with respect to what you can and cannot do.

If there are children involved, each party has the right to see, and visit the children until a Court Order is in place which governs the same.

Neither party can secret (hide or kidnap) the children from the other. In child custody situations it is imperative to get temporary Court orders as soon as possible with respect to custody and visitation.

It is very important that you do not say bad things about the other parent to the children or in the presence of the children. This is called parental alienation, and could adversely affect your chances of getting primary custody of the children.

When it comes to child custody the Court decides custody on the basis of what is in the best interest of the children.

If you are in imminent fear of bodily harm from your spouse, or you have actually been physically harmed, call the police immediately.

Effective communication between you and our firm will be the key to resolving your case as quickly and as painlessly as possible.

We ask our clients to completely fill out all questionnaires that our firm provides to you in a timely manner. Family Law cases are paperwork intensive, and each of the questions asked in the questionnaires relate to questions that must be answered on official Judicial Counsel forms, and for the prosecution of your case. Doing paperwork is not fun, but if you want to get through your case, do not procrastinate!

If you have any questions about your case with our firm, please feel free to call us.

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Getting and meeting the right attorney can appear daunting, especially for someone who has never hired an auto attorney.

So how do you go about finding the best auto accident lawyer to handle your case? I recommend you are doing the following:

– Begin by speaking with family, friends and co-workers to see if anyone they know was involved in a car accident lawsuit. Ask them about their experience and when they would recommend their auto attorney.

– Search the Internet for local lawyers who specialize in auto incidents. Review their Web sites for professional advice and a solid track record with cases. Beware of advertising materials and Web sites that contain self-proclaimed endorsements, such as ‘the best, the top, leading, ‘ that cannot be supported by fact or verified by recognized third parties.

– Avoid the Yp: The best auto crash attorneys do not have to advertise heavily, they earn new clients from positive word of mouth or from other legal professional referrals.

Once you have recognized a few potential auto attorneys, break before contacting their offices:

– Seek third-party verification of the regulation firm and the lawyer’s reputation by checking legal publications, such as Texas Lawyers Weekly, for any positive or negative publicity about the attorney or maybe the cases that she has managed.

– Visit those Net sites to determine whether the attorney is in good standing.

– The auto incident lawyer should be definitely involved with Texas legal organizations like the Texas Association for Justice, the American Association for Justice and the State Bar of Texas not merely as users but since leaders familiar with the latest developments in Texas no-fault insurance and auto negligence personal injuries laws.

Once you have verified the quality of an auto attorney, call to set up an initial consultation. Some companies will charge a discussion charge to meet with you, several Texas auto accident attorneys offer free consultations to better inform potential clients, with no cost or obligation. Due to the fact car accident cases are extremely time-sensitive, you should expect the lawyer to quickly respond to a phone or Internet request immediately.

The first meeting is very important in deciding whether an auto incident legal professional or law firm is the right fit for you. Here are some ideas of questions to ask during the consultation that can help evaluate whether a particular legal professional will be the best fit for your case:

1. How easy will it be to get in touch with you?
2. What client references do you have that can touch upon your skills and trustworthiness?
3. How many cases like mine have you dealt with in the last year?
4. Who otherwise at the office will be working on my case?
5. How is payment for services handled? Are there any fees I will have to pay out of pants pocket during my case or at the end?
six. If my case is lost and no compensation is awarded, will We still owe you something for your time and effort? (Generally speaking, car attorneys charge for their services on a a contingency charge basis, where the client pays the legal professional 33 percent of what the lawyer collects in a settlement or if the case goes to trial. )

After the consultation is over, ask yourself the following questions:

1 . Did the auto accident legal professional listen well?
2. Did the legal professional make clear legal matters to me in conditions I was able to understand?
3. Did the auto legal professional appear very knowledgeable about Texas no-fault law and how the law applies to my specific case? Do he have to “research it” and get returning to me?
4. Did the auto legal professional seem to be to comprehend my medical injuries and provide to refer me to the best medical care?

Ultimately, you want to choose the auto accident legal professional that you consider will do the best job for you. Although you may choose not to employ an lawyer or document a lawsuit, there is no harm in getting first advice on steps you can take to immediately protect yourself after a serious injury from a Texas auto accident.

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If you or someone you know has been injured in an Amputation accident we are here to help you!

The Quick Facts on Amputation Injury Accidents:

We are here to help you find an experienced injury lawyer in your state.
We have 10 years experience connecting people with personal injury lawyers that will fight for you.
Amputation Injury cases can be very complex and time consuming.
Amputation Injury cases have a strict statute of limitations for you file an injury claim.
Time is of the essence when it comes to filing your personal injury claim.
Navigating through the legal process can be complicated and we will prepare you for this process.
All of our personal injury attorneys work on a contingency basis and don’t get paid unless you do!
Many Amputation Injury cases can be resolved without the expense and trauma of going into a courtroom.
We are to help your family sort through the legal issues resulting from an injury.
If you have been injured in an Amputation Injury accident you are entitled to these damages:

Disfigurement (past and future)
Economic damages
End-of-life-expenses
Exemplary damages
Future medical bills
Loss of consortium
Loss of earning capacity
Loss of parental care
Lost wages (past and future)
Pain and suffering
Punitive damages
Medical costs
Monetary compensation
Non-economic damages
Physical impairment (past and future)
Loss of spousal support & companionship

If you’ve spent any amount of time looking for a personal injury lawyer online you know how hard it is to find an experienced wrongful death lawyer to answer your questions. Our personal injury lawyers worry about your case so you don’t have to. All of our experienced Personal Injury Lawyers attorneys work on a contingency basis and don’t get paid unless you do!

Each State has a strict statute of limitations for you file your personal Injury lawsuit. Time is of the essence when it comes to filing your personal injury claim!

Call us now and talk to a live personal injury counselor that will help you take the first step toward getting the compensation you deserve and getting your life back so you can concentrate on your recovery.
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Personal Injury Lawsuit

For a personal injury claim to be successful, lawyers have to show that your injury resulted from the negligence of another party. In the case of a wrongful death immediate family members have the right to file a wrongful death claim. We help you file personal injury lawsuits in all 50 states.

How we help can you today:

We will answer your questions about your case.
We connect you with experienced Injury claims lawyers.
Our Injury lawyers have many years of experience.
Call us today and get real answers to your questions by an experienced injury attorney.
We welcome your questions, and we will to return your calls within 24 hours.

10 Things a Personal Injury Lawyer Can Do For You.

A Personal Injury Lawyer can help you recover medical expenses and lost income from all responsible parties.
A Personal Injury Lawyer can help you obtain records, case information, legal documents, and photographs related to your case.
A Personal Injury Lawyer can track down witnesses that must be found and ask for testimony regarding your Personal Injury case.
A Personal Injury Lawyer will guide you through each step of the legal process and help minimize potential disruptions to your life so you can focus on your recovery.
A Personal Injury Lawyer can provide expert witnesses who have testified in similar Personal Injury cases to help with your settlement.
A Personal Injury Lawyer can help educate you about your case and the state laws involved.
A Personal Injury Lawyer can ensure that your Personal Injury case is filed within the statute of limitations for your state.
Personal Injury litigation is complicated and can involve large sums of money, and a Personal Injury Lawyer can ensure you get compensation.
Personal Injury lawsuits can take a long time in the busy U. S. court system. You will need an experienced Personal Injury Lawyer that understands that your case will take time and will fight for you and your family through to a successful settlement.
By retaining a Personal Injury Lawyer, you will not need to worry about having cash upfront for your case because your Personal Injury Lawyer will work on a NO WIN – NO FEE basis. You will not have to pay a penny unless you receive compensation.

No charge for your initial phone consultation.
If you have a question about filing a Texas wrongful death lawsuit, you don’t have to come into our office. Call us, and you’ll speak directly to a lawyer, if a lawyer is unavailable, your call will be returned as quickly as possible.

We solve tough problems.
Helping you through this difficult time is our commitment. We are always available to answer your questions with a phone call and will always keep you informed on the progress of your wrongful death case. We will do everything we can to ensure you receive the highest compensation for your wrongful death case.

How we help can you today:

We will answer your questions about your case.
We connect you with experienced Injury claims lawyers.
Our Injury lawyers have many years of years of experience.
Call us today and get real answers to your questions by an experienced injury attorney.
We welcome your questions, and we will to return your calls within 24 hours.

No charge for your initial phone consultation.
If you have a legal question about an injury, you don’t have to come into our office. Call us, and you’ll speak directly to a lawyer, and if a lawyer is not available, your call will be returned as quickly as possible.

We solve the tough problems.
Helping you through this difficult time is our commitment. We are always available to answer your questions with a phone call and will always keep you informed. We will do everything we can to ensure that you receive the highest compensation for your injuries.

We connect you with Texas Injury Lawyers throughout the state.

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Estate Planning & Probate Attorneys

Life Insurance Planning
Texas Life Insurance Planning
Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts • Survivorship Standby Trusts • Life Insurance Beneficiary Planning • Estate Tax Reduction / Elimination
Transferring life insurance proceeds to your loved ones should be accomplished in a way that does not increase your taxable estate. Estate & Probate, our firm has extensive experience in all aspects of designing trusts to hold life insurance policies.

The Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust.

Irrevocable Life Insurance Trusts are established to hold life insurance products. In many circumstances, properly drafted life insurance trusts can be funded in such a way that allows the person setting up the trust to move funds to the trust enabling it to both purchase insurance initially, as well as pay the annual premiums on such insurance. This can usually be accomplished without using any of the settlor’s lifetime gift tax credit (resulting in no tax being generated due to the transfers).

At the death of the settlor, the insurance proceeds are distributed directly into the trust. Since the trust is a separate taxpayer for tax purposes, this often results in no inclusion in the taxable estate of the settlor. The funds in the trust can then be used to purchase property from the estate if the estate needed cash to pay taxes or other expenses. Finally, the insurance proceeds can be distributed to the individuals and entities of the settlor’s choice (evidenced in the trust document itself) replacing any value that could not come from the estate because of tax and expense payments by the estate.

The Survivorship Standby Trust.

The Survivorship Standby Trust can be used in situations where there is:

a desire to retain access to the cash value of the life insurance policy;
there is no need for a payout of the policy until the death of the surviving spouse (i.e., there is no need for cash upon the death of the first spouse to die);
a desire to have the option to add liquidity to the estate of the second spouse to die to pay estate expenses and taxes; and
a desire to pass the policy proceeds to family, friends, charity or other recipients without having the policy payout value included in the taxable estate of either spouse.
The spouse that is statistically more likely to be the first to die (typically the husband) purchases a second to die policy directly. During life, this spouse pays the insurance premiums directly. Therefore, these premiums do not need to utilize the spouse’s annual gift tax exclusion and will not count against that spouse’s lifetime estate and gift tax credit. Additionally, during life, the owner of the policy has access to the cash value of the policy. At the death of the owner, a Survivorship Standby Trust is established by Will or other testamentary document. Because the policy does not pay out until the death of the second spouse, there is no estate tax inclusion of the policy payout amount. Upon the death of the policy owner, however, the cash value of the policy will be included in the taxable estate. The ownership of the policy is then moved into the Survivorship Standby Trust, which functions from that point forward in much the same way as the Irrevocable Life Insurance Trust. If the policy premiums are not paid up, the surviving spouse may contribute value to the Trust so that the trust may continue to pay the premiums.

At the death of the surviving spouse (the second to die), the insurance proceeds are paid to the Trust. The Trust can then purchase assets from the estate of the second to die (or may be able to make loans to the estate) to provide liquidity to the estate so that the estate can pay expenses or taxes. The Trust will ultimately distribute the insurance proceeds to the beneficiaries.

Our firm will help you plan an appropriate life insurance trust structure.
We will also help you understand who should be named as the beneficiaries of your policies to provide the most tax protection to your estate.

These options vary widely in their utility for specific purposes under different factual situations. Therefore, it is crucial to receive counsel from an skilled planner with experience in each of these areas.

Estate Planning & Probate in Texas have established a solid reputation throughout these communities for our dedication and service to our clients. Contact us for a free initial consultation or case evaluation with an experienced estate planning and probate lawyer.

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