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Can divorce mediators help with custody disagreements?

On top of the usual matters of divorce like alimony and property division, Texan parents have one other incredibly important aspect to handle: their children. How will you raise them? Who will get custody? How will you work out visitation schedules? It can seem impossible to come to an agreement, especially if you don't get along well.

This is where divorce mediators can come into play. Encyclopedia.com defines mediators as people who acts as a bridge between two opposing parties. In this case, you and your spouse are the parties.

What do you do after a hit and run?

Texan residents like you expect the roads to be relatively safe for pedestrians and motorists alike. Unfortunately, that isn't always the case. We at the Law Office of Roland R. Esparza, P.C. are here to help explain what to do in the aftermath of a hit and run incident.

Hit and run incidents can be traumatic for a number of reasons. Naturally the physical impact of an unprotected body being hit by a vehicle can cause massive injury. The shock of being left after being hit can also be terrible to process. Not only that, but you may have fears about whether compensation for these injuries will be covered if the party cannot be located.

How can you handle a high asset divorce?

Texan residents who are going through a divorce have a lot of hurdles to jump. As a couple with high assets, you will have your own unique battles to face. We at the Law Office of Roland R. Esparza, PC, are here to help you work through these issues with some suggestions on how to handle high asset divorces.

One of the first things you can do to help yourself in a high asset divorce is keep track of all of your assets. The division of assets can get complicated quickly if you have more sources to deal with. If you have inheritances, savings accounts, businesses, fine art, lots of property and other such things, you will need to know exactly how much it is all worth, what is eligible for splitting and what you can keep to yourself. This will save a lot of time and effort later.

Records hidden no longer: open adoption in Texas

Prior to the 1970s, it was common for most adoption records to remain hidden from the public eye, preventing any contact between birth parents and adopted children. The assumption was that this would provide adopted children with a concrete sense of security and belonging to a single family unit while providing birth parents with a sense of closure to move on with their lives. However, the assumption did not always reflect reality. As a potential adoptive parent in Texas, you now have the opportunity of participating in either an open adoption or closed adoption. Because this decision has long-term ramifications, we at the Law Office of Roland R. Esparza believe it is important for you to learn as much as you can about open adoption. That way, you can make an informed decision. 

According to the National Infertility Association, there are many different types of open adoptions. Some involve full disclosure of identifying information between birth parents and adoptive parents. In other open adoption arrangements, you may only learn the birth parents' first names, and vice versa. This type of situation affords a greater degree of privacy to both you and the birth parents. The adoption agency or an attorney will often act as a go-between, facilitating communication between the two families according to the agreed-upon arrangement. 

How parental alienation happens

The effects of a divorce can last for years, especially in high-conflict situations. The bad feelings throughout the divorce can linger far after a judge signs the decree.

Unfortunately, children often get caught in the turmoil. Not only do they have their own feelings to deal with, but they also have the cast off from their parents. What happens when one parent's emotions begin to change the way the children feel toward the other parent? A shift like this may lead to long-term psychological consequences for the children and the "innocent" parent.

Summer presents visitation challenges

At the Law Office of Roland R. Esparza, P.C., we know that it can be a challenge any time of year for divorced parents who share custody. However, you and other Texas residents may find it particularly difficult to juggle your everyday responsibilities and visitation time during the summer months.

The Huffington Post explains that visitation schedules change for most divorced parents during summer. You and your ex may switch off time with your children every week the rest of the year, but you may have a few weeks or more than a month with your children during the summer. There may also be an extended period this summer when your ex has the children. Understandably, the lengthy switch in location can be disorienting and stressful for children. You may also miss your kids while they are with your ex, as well as find it particularly difficult to arrange for childcare and activities when you have them to yourself for several weeks at a time.

Bexar County leads region in truck accident deaths

Most anyone who lives in Bexar County has had the experience of being in a regular passenger vehicle and feeling immediately dwarfed and vulnerable when a tractor-trailer pulls up on the side of the vehicle they are in. The size of these big rigs is impressive yet it also highlights the risk that people in other vehicles are exposed to. Any accident in which a commercial truck entangles with a car, pickup truck or sport utility vehicle puts the passengers in the smaller vehicles at a serious disadvantage.

According to records from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Texas experienced a jump in the number of vehicular fatalities associated with large truck accidents between 2016 and 2017. Between 2013 and 2016, these deaths represented 15% to 16% of the total deaths in all automobile accidents statewide. That changed in 2017 when truck accident deaths accounted for 17.4% of all fatalities. In 2016, 558 people died in these crashes but in 2017, 649 people were killed.

Why do so many people believe the hands-free myth?

A deadly myth has made its way across Texas and the rest of the country. It states that hands-free cellphone usage while driving is perfectly safe. Nothing could be further from the truth. In no way does your hands-free cellphone usage equate with risk-free cellphone usage while you drive.

As reported by the National Safety Council, distracted driving, including that caused by hands-free cellphone usage, accounts for the death of at least 100 people each day. The sad truth is that hands-free cellphone usage is just as dangerous as hand-held cellphone usage, if not more so.

What are underride guards and why are they crucial?

Have you ever noticed that extra bumper hanging off of the trailer of large trucks driving the Texas roads and freeways? That bumper is actually an underride guard and it is there to protect you in case of an accident.

Think about it. Unless your passenger vehicle of choice is a pickup, van or other large vehicle, you and your passengers ride at eye level with a semi’s wheels. If you crash into the back of the trailer, your own vehicle likely will continue forward and wind up sliding underneath it without an underride guard to stop it. If this happens, the roof and hood of your vehicle likely will shear off, leaving you and your passengers to die a horrible death by decapitation.

What NOT to say after a car crash

Car accidents are scary and disorienting, but the steps you take afterward may make or break your case for compensation. Not only do you need to be mindful about calling the police or getting medical treatment, but you must be careful with the words you say.  

The things you discuss and the terms you use with the other driver, witnesses, law enforcement, insurance agents and doctors have major implications on how much money you can receive for your injuries – if any. Here are some statements to avoid after a motor vehicle collision: