Houston Business Litigation, Consumer Debt, and Real Estate Attorney
Call Today: (832) 305-7694
7457 Harwin Dr., Suite 345
Houston, Texas 77036
 
To be eligible for SSDI benefits, your condition must make you unable to work for at least 12 months, and you must be unable to earn more than $1,180 a month (for 2018). You must also have a total of 40 work credits (20 of which must be earned in the decade before a disability arose).

The maximum amount of credits a person can earn in a year is four, one every three months. The minimum amount to earn for a work credit is $1,260. People who have worked for at least five of the last ten years with a record of paying into Social Security payroll taxes meet the technical qualifications for eligibility.

 
 
You started a corporation to keep from getting sued, but you got sued anyway. Good news/bad news... The good news is you may have a great defense to get any personal liability off of you as an individual. The bad news is, you have to present that defense and have the court agree with you.

The bottom line...talk to a professional who can advise you regarding the risks of conducting business with just a D/B/A. You may want to shield yourself from personal attack by forming an LLC, a PLLC, a corporation, or some other business entity. Registering your company with the state is not as expensive as you might think, but doing business without registering could end up costing you more than you ever imagined. 

If you have questions, we have answers.
 
 
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 court is only allowed to give you 5 days after an eviction.  After 5 days, the landlord will have the right to obtain a Writ of Possession.  That grants the constables the authority to come to your residence, force you and all other occupants out, seize all of you personal property, and then auction that property for the benefit of your landlord.  

Don't let this happen.  You can either move out, or you can appeal.  To appeal, you'll have three options.

1.  Cash Bond.  You pay an amount set by the court, pay filing fees, and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting;

2.  Surety Bond.  You and another resident (who does not live with you) of Harris County swear to be bound to the judgment on appeal.  You  
pay filing fees and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting;

3.  Affidavit of Inability to Pay.  You file a sworn affidavit with the Court which explains why you are unable to pay the Cash Bond.  However, within five days, you must pay one month's rent into the Court's registry (and every future month until your appeal is heard).  If the Court accepts your affidavit, you pay no filing fees and wait for the county to send notice of the new trial setting.

While filing the appeal may give you additional time, it does nothing to remove the judgment from your record.  Talk to an attorney about how a negotiated settlement can help you move into your new home within a comfortable time frame and without the harm that comes from a judgment for eviction on your record.  

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.

 
 
If you let someone drive your car and they get into an accident, can you be sued?

The short answer is, “Yes.” However, like many subjects in the law, it depends on a number of factors.

When you give someone permission to drive your vehicle, you are entrusting your vehicle to that person. You are ensuring others on the road that the person will drive your vehicle in a safe manner and in accordance with all traffic laws. However, if an entrustee gets into an accident, you may still be liable for the damage to another person and their vehicle.

So how can you be liable? To be liable for negligent entrustment a person suing you must prove

(1) that YOU entrusted a vehicle

(2) to an unlicensed, incompetent, or reckless driver;

(3) that you KNEW OF SHOULD HAVE KNOWN that the driver was unlicensed, incompetent, or reckless;

(4) the DRIVER was negligent on the occasion in question; and

(5) the driver’s negligence proximately caused the accident.

Therefore, in order to be held liable, not only must you be negligent in entrusting your vehicle, but the person who was driving your vehicle must be negligent too, and that negligence must have caused the accident. So, be wary of who drives your car, and the manner in which they are driving. If you should entrust your vehicle to someone you know is not a good driver, chances are you are liable for negligent entrustment.

Be aware who you let get behind the wheel! As for Insurance issues, that’s another beast altogether.

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.

 
 
This happens all the time. The lease for a rent house or an apartment is up. A deposit was paid, but the owner claims that none of the deposit will be returned. What are your rights?

Well, unless the owner has a valid legal justification, which is possible, you should probably get your deposit (or some portion of it) back. However, what happens if it turns out that the owner had no valid legal justification for withholding that deposit? Will a Texas court require the owner to pay up?

If your facts are right, the courts can award your deposit, your attorney fees, and a sizable penalty against an owner who illegally withholds a deposit. To know if your situation fits the recipe for civil recourse against a bad landlord, contact an attorney. You may be entitled to recover your lost deposit and more.

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.


 
 
“An offense under [Section 42.07 of the Texas Penal Code] is a Class B misdemeanor, except that the offense is a Class A misdemeanor if the actor has previously been convicted under this section."

So where is the line between irritating and harassing? It seems that too many people believe that they have been “harassed” when, for example, their neighbor rudely suggests that the dog should stop barking. Also, is your boss’s constant emailing at work harassment?

Consider the severity of the law when considering whether or not harassment has occurred.
Was any part of the Harassment….
Obscene,
A threat to inflict bodily injury,
Alarming & False,
or a Torment?
If not, you were not likely harassed. In fact, most people who claim harassment are simply victims of mere jerkiness, which is not necessarily against the law.

If, however, someone has crossed the line (and there is no simple test to know for sure), you may have a criminal and/or a civil action against them. Consult an attorney with your specific facts.

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