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As a grandparent, looking out for the best interests of your grandchild or grandchildren is not always easy, especially when the traditional family structure falls apart. If your family has suboptimal circumstances that you believe negatively impact your grandchildren, there are steps you can take. While your legal rights may be diminished when compared to biological parents, you are not completely without options.

What are my rights?

The first step to providing a stable environment is to understand your rights. In Roxel v. Granvill, the Supreme Court ruled that grandparents do not have a constitutional right to visit their grandchildren. This means that your visitation or custody rights are not federally protected. Instead, laws about visitation vary by state. In Texas, there are laws in place that create a clear avenue to file for visitation rights or custody of grandchildren.

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Whether you've been married for a few years or for several decades, property division may be the most complex aspect of your divorce, especially if you've accumulated significant wealth.

For many people, property division at divorce forms the foundation of their financial lives for many years to come.

Fair and realistic property valuation is crucial to obtaining a fair divorce settlement.

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In contrast with older generations, many Americans these days are waiting until their 30s or even later to get married. The story is different, though, with military members.

Consider these statistics from the U.S. Department of Defense Demographics Report:

  • Of all active-duty service members, about 43 percent are aged 25 or younger.
  • About 23 percent are between the ages of 26 and 30.
  • And slightly more than 56 percent of active-duty members are married.

Out of all the military branches, the Army has the highest percentage of married service members — at nearly 60 percent.

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While Texas law is fairly broad when it comes to who can adopt a child, the many issues related to adoption are often complex, and there are procedural requirements that must be met in order to finalize the adoption.

Here are some things you may not know about the rules for adoption in Texas.

1. Generally, if the child is age 12 or older, then the child must consent to the adoption.

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Whether it's where you live or where your child or ex-spouse lives, place of residency is an important issue in divorce and child custody cases.

In fact, before a married couple can get divorced in Texas, at least one of the spouses must have lived in the state for the past six months. The same spouse must also have resided for the preceding 90 days in the county where the divorce petition was filed.

Important to note: a nonresident spouse can still file for divorce in Texas if the other spouse meets the residency requirements.

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