Houston Business Litigation, Consumer Debt, and Real Estate Attorney
Call Today: (832) 305-7694
7457 Harwin Dr., Suite 345
Houston, Texas 77036
 
Valentine’s Day, a commercialized holiday used to exploit the true meaning of love with the purchasing of flowers, jewelry, candy, dinner, etc. This day is used to symbolize love and happiness but sometimes just the opposite occurs.

For instance, you are notified that your significant other wants a divorce on Valentine’s Day!

What do you do next? Some people would say, seek counseling and see if your marriage can be saved. This is a great avenue to explore, the majority of marriages dissolve due to irreconcilable differences so its completely plausible that you and your significant other can get back on the same page to save your marriage. Other’s may say, beat your significant other the punch by filing suit first. Honestly, if a divorce proceeding is imminent, it doesn’t matter who files first, the process will be the same.

What is most important is that you are informed of what your rights are and what you are entitled to receive if that unfortunate day comes. Divorce is a horrible ordeal that takes a toll of the best of people but being properly equipped to handle the coming 6 months to a year of litigation that comes along with the divorce itself will provide peace of mind.

It is imperative that you speak with an attorney to learn what your rights are and how an attorney can help you navigate the legal system. Divorce is not easy, with the complex issues of custody, child support, spousal support, division of community property, etc. being involved it is a bit overwhelming. An attorney will provide you with the guidance you need to properly handle every aspect presented by a divorce proceeding.

And let’s face it, if your significant other really lets you know they are divorcing you on Valentine’s Day, you can bet your bottom dollar they’re serious about it and you should be too.

Remember failure to plan is planning to fail. Give us a call! (832) 305-7694.
 
 
So you’ve found love! Congratulations!

Now comes the hard question, before the festivities celebrating you and your significant other commence, ask yourself, “Do I need a prenup?” This isn’t a question of loyalty, love, honesty, or planning for failure. This is a business decision that should be considered seriously by both parties. If you have considerable assets you would like to protect, a prenuptial agreement isn’t a bad idea.

The purpose of a prenuptial agreement is to govern property division when both parties can agree on the distribution of their personal and real property in the event of an unfortunate situation like death or divorce. Prenuptial agreements also have limitations as to what can and cannot be controlled. For example, a prenup cannot waive a future spouse’s benefits under a 401k, violate public policy, defraud creditors, and cannot have a harmful or adverse effect on the right of a child to support.

Remember, a prenuptial agreement can be made to protect bot parties and their interests in the matrimonial regime which is formed during the course of the marriage. If you do consider a prenup, it is imperative that you consult with an attorney to be sure your prenup complies with the Texas Family Code, or else it may be deemed voidable.

Failure to plan is planning to fail. Planning to tie the knot? Give us a call! (832) 305-7694.

 
 
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I am often asked how someone can get out of their HOA. The short, very easy, very sarcastic answer is, “Well, move.”

Generally, your Homeowners Association is here to stay. You may not remember being notified that you were joining all the HOA fun that glorious day you bought your home and signed a mountain of paperwork (and read none of it). However, that’s your HOA now.

So how does one cope with their Homeowners Association? Well, you can find a current copy of your deed restrictions and get yourself familiar with twenty-or-so pages of mind-numbing legalese. You could acquaint yourself with your neighbors and swap HOA war stories. There are also regularly scheduled meetings to attend where the HOA Board, believe it or not, welcomes input from its follow homeowners. That’s right, the board is generally comprised of other owners (a lot like you).

When it comes to HOA issues, we encourage self-help. Many times, problems between homeowners and the HOA are resolved by sitting down and simply talking things out. Other problems, like a cease and desist letter from the HOA Board’s attorney, might require some professional attention.

Coming down with a case of the HOA blues? Give us a call, we’d love to help.  

 
 
Wrong.

First of all, you shouldn’t let bad debt linger, and seven years is way too long! Clients give me this line all the time. I think they really hope that it’s true, and it sounds somewhat logical, but, no. It doesn’t work that way.

Generally speaking, there is a FOUR year statute of limitations for “bad debt” (whatever that means) to wind up in a lawsuit. However, most people don’t know the scary truth. Debts can actually come back from the DEAD! Additionally, if a debt is reduced to a judgment, it just tacked on at least TEN additional interest-bearing years! It’s common to have debts last 10, 15, 20 years or more based on how the debts were structured, how they have been used, and whether or not the debts were ever part of a lawsuit.

Not sure if your debt has risen from the dead? Maybe your debt’s alive and well, just around the corner, and gearing up to yell, “Boo!” Do something about it. Call an experienced professional. We’d love to answer your debt related questions and talk to you about cost effective solutions which protect your credit, your property, and your bank accounts from attacks you might never see coming.

 
 
Within two days of the flood, I received multiple emails for help. One person said, “My rent house was completely flooded, and my landlord kicked me out. I have no place to go.”

Whether you are a Landlord or a Tenant, you have certain rights and obligations with a rent house after a natural disaster. For a quick review of your rights, read your written lease. You may also want to speak with a professional who practices Landlord/Tenant Law. For a free consultation, call (832) 305-7694.

How long does a Landlord have before repairs must be completed?

Do you have the right to terminate your Lease?

Can a renter withhold rent while repairs are pending?

What must a landlord do if a residential rental unit is uninhabitable?

Can hotel and food costs be refunded?

Don’t act without knowing the answers to your specific questions. Many answers are fact specific to your situation and to your lease. Don’t risk making yourself a target for an Eviction or a Repair & Remedy lawsuit.

 
 
In the market for a car or your first home? Do you know what's on your credit report?

You may find that your report is full of old claims, lost credit cards, or worse, accounts opened by identity thieves. Your credit report is your responsibility. Not only should you be familiar with what's on your credit report, it's up to you to make sure that anything that doesn't belong there is promptly removed.

There are three credit reporting agencies: Transunion, Equifax, and Experian. If your report reflects old or inaccurate information, you should contact the creditor and all three credit reporting agencies to make sure that your credit report is up-to-date.

Your credit score is important. Make sure you treat it that way. For information on obtaining a free credit report visit:

https://www.annualcreditreport.com

or call (877) 322-8228.
 

 
 
The short answer is "Yes."

State law allows a Home Owner's Association (or HOA) to sue you in state court to recover unpaid assessments. Additionally, you might be on the hook for late fees, interest, and various legal costs. A seemingly small yearly or monthly fee can quickly snowball into large sums of debt that an HOA can demand in court. If the debt remains unpaid, the HOA can eventually foreclose, and your home could belong to them.

That means that you may be perfectly up-to-date with your mortgage but a few hundred dollars behind with HOA assessments and lose your home. Don't get caught in an avalanche of debt. If you have been sued by an HOA for unpaid assessments or other violation of your deed covenants, give us a call before a court signs a judgment and you lose much more than you bargained for.

A lawsuit against you is not the end of the world, but it does mean that you have a limited amount of time to act. We have settled many of these types of lawsuits and usually find a way to keep home owners right where they belong. 
 
 
We see it almost every day: the number 1 mistake that tenants make when dealing with their landlords, property managers, and apartment complexes. We talk to tenants who are frustrated and angry about the lack of attention they’ve received regarding requests for repairs. So do they have any grounds to withhold rent? Any grounds for legal action? Unfortunately the typical answer is “no” – and it all comes down to the lease that you have signed.

The number one mistake that tenants make when making a repair request is HOW they make their request.  Tenants are often given a phone number to request all repairs.  But your lease probably requires your request to be made in writing.

But what if your apartment manager asked you to text? It doesn’t matter. What if your apartment complex has an online portal to submit requests for convenience? It doesn’t matter. You can use those things in tandem with your written notice. And be sure to keep a dated copy for yourself as proof that you’ve sent the notice.

So, are your repair requests guaranteed from there? Not quite. If you owe any amount of money in rent or fees, your landlord may be able to refuse your repair request. 

So what can I do to stand on my rights?  You’ve just asked a huge question.  Fortunately, we have the answers.  Don’t just put up with that broken sink!  Give us a call for a free confidential consultation to make sure that you are getting the most out of your lease.  

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.


 
 
The short answer is usually, “No,” but it’s not always the answer.  Let’s first assume that the judgment has nothing to do with your house at all (eviction, foreclosure, or some criminal activity…).  What happens when a court grants someone a judgment against you, and you own a home?

Generally, your homestead is protected.  Other land, whether improved or not, would likely NOT be protected.  Well then, what could happen?

If you are lucky, nothing, but anyone with access to puclic records can determine whether or not land is titled in your name.  If that is the case, a Judgment Creditor can file for a Writ of Execution on any property owned by a Judgment Debtor.  The county will allow the Judgment Creditor to sieze the property, sell the property, and recover for the judgment, including any fees involved in such recovery.

In a nutshell, if you own multiple pieces of property and you have a judgment against you, the place you call home is generally safe, but the place you call passive income may not be called that for long (at least not by you).

If you have a judgment against you or are currently involved in civil litigation, consult an attorney with your questions.  Waiting around may cost you more than you bargained for.

Legal Disclaimer

This blog site provides only general information about the law and does not, under any circumstances, constitute legal advice. You should not act or refrain from acting based on these materials without first obtaining the advice of professional legal counsel.

 

Houston Business Litigation, Consumer Debt, and Real Estate Attorney