Family Law – Documents & Forms

 

The following is intended to give you some generic guidance regarding the documents you will draft and forms you will use in a typical family law case.  However, each case presents unique facts and one size does not fit all.  The third drawer of the short filing cabinet contains a multitude of forms for a variety of circumstances which I will not attempt to cover here.  As used herein TRCP = Texas Rules of Civil Procedure and TFC = Texas Family Code.

 

Factual investigation:

-                     Factual investigation form

 

Check issuance:

-                     Check request form (checks require 2 signatures)

 

Pauper’s case:

-                     Motion to Proceed In Forma Pauperis Pursuant to TRCP 145

-                     Client’s affidavit attached as exhibit A to Motion [see TRCP 145(2)]

-                     Attorney’s certificate of pro bono representation [see TRCP 145(3)]

-                     Order approving rule 145 motion

 

Statement on Alternative Dispute Resolution [see TFC 6.404 & 102.0085]

-                     Must be attached to all original petitions as an exhibit

 

Service of Process/ Waiver [see TRCP 21a & 119 and TFC 6.4035, 6.408 & 102.009]:

-                     Civil Process Request form

-                     Local personal service – “Edward Michael Investigations; 713/975-1505” is our private process server

-                     If respondent incarcerated, indicate “attorney pick up” on process request form, pick up citation package from clerk when ready and we will use the constable/sheriff in jurisdiction of incarceration to accomplish personal service on respondent

-                     If substituted service, see TRCP 106 Motion & Order with process server’s affidavit attached to motion as exhibit if under (b) – don’t forget TRCP 107 proof of service shall be in the manner ordered by the court; requires strict compliance

-                     If publication, we use the Daily Court Review (see below)

-                     If out of jurisdiction personal service by someone other than constable, see TRCP 103 for order authorizing service;  BEWARE:  TRCP 6 – no service on Sunday

-                     Waiver package – “warning letter” + waiver + file stamped copy of petition

-                     Ask a staff person for assistance in this area

 

Publication case [see TRCP 244, 114, & 117 together with TFC 6.409 & 102.010]:

-                     Motion for Citation by Publication pursuant to TRCP 109 w/ client’s affidavit attached as exhibit A and your affidavit of due diligence attached as exhibit B

-                     Order allowing citation by publication pursuant to TRCP 109

-                     Motion & Order to Appoint Attorney Ad Litem pursuant to TRCP 244 or

-                     Motion & Order to Waive Appointment of Attorney Ad Litem pursuant to TFC 6.409(e) with Petitioner’s affidavit attached as exhibit A.

-                     Statement of the Evidence

-                     Decree should provide for the making of a record

 

Default case [see TRCP 239]:

-                     See TRCP 107 – return of citation must be on file with clerk [10 day rule]

-                     See TRCP 99, 114 & TFC 6.409 passed answer period [Monday next rule]

-                     See TFC 6.701 and 6.702 – divorce waiting period [60 day rule]

-                     Certificate of respondent’s last known address

-                     Decree should provide for the making of a record

 

The above apply and affect your case, in addition to the below indicated:

 

Divorce (no property/no kids):

1.      Court forms:

-                     TDH/BVS

 

2.      Documents:

-                     Petition

-                     Decree

 

Divorce (w/ kids) [watch out for TFC 102.013(c)]:

  1.  Court forms:

-                     Inquiry on Court of Continuing Jurisdiction for Child (1 for each child)

-                     TDH/BVS

-                     Parent-Child Information sheet

-                     Child Support form

-                     Child Support calculation sheet

-                     Certificate of attendance at parenting seminar (see local rule 12)

 

3.      Documents:

-                     Petition

-                     Wage withholding order (child support/ spousal support)

-                     Qualified medical support order (health insurance)

-                     Qualified domestic relations order (retirement)

-                     Decree

 

Parentage:

-                     Paternity Registry Request form

-                     Voluntary statement of Paternity & Denial of Paternity (see TFC 160.304)