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Patricia Faye Bushman

Patricia Bushman’s Answers

967 total


  • What can I expect to happen at our hearing for contempt of non payment of child support against my son's father? (Texas)

    My son's father is behind over $24,000 in child support. I was FINALLY able to get the AG office to file contempt charges on him. We have a hearing Monday and I'm nervous because I don't know what to expect. What can I expect to possilby happen at...

    Patricia’s Answer

    You are probably right about why he is contacting your son. Remember that if he shows up for his visitation, you can't deny him without going back to Court.

    If this is the first Contempt, the AG usually tries to work out a deal with him to get him to pay. In the deal they will award a judgement for what he owes, set up a payment plan (to be paid in addition to the current support he is ordered to pay). The will find him in contempt and then either suspend the commitment to jail or do a commitment at a future date. A hearing a few months in the future will be set to see if he is paying. If not he will go to jail at the new date.

    You do not have to talk with him or agree to any deal you do not think is in your son's best interest.

    Good luck to you.

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  • Would I be able to receive child support?

    My ex and I have 3 children. The youngest (16) lives with me and sees her other parent every other Friday and Saturday. The oldest two (19) and (21) live with my ex. Both are out of school and working. I live in Texas. The divorce decree doe...

    Patricia’s Answer

    You should be able to modify the Order to have him pay support. The adult children are out of the equation, and don't effect the support. Contact a good family law attorney in your area to explore your options.

    Good luck.

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  • My husband owes back child support. Can the state of Texas take my return if we don't file together?

    We just married 2 years ago, and he owed arrears then as well, so we have filed our own separate returns from the beginning. Can the state still take it from my return when I file head of household claiming my children and he is not on my tax ret...

    Patricia’s Answer

    Technically, since Texas is a community property state, 1/2 of your refund is his and therefore subject to seizure. Practically, if he is not on the return, they will probably not garnish it as they track things through his social security number. If they do garnish your return, you have some defenses and should contact a good family law attorney in your area to help.

    Good luck.

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  • If I am only obligated to pay 17.5% child support to my ex for 1 child...and I have 1 dependent at home...

    what is the percentage owed to my ex if I have 2 dependents at home?

    Patricia’s Answer

    16%, assuming that both "dependents" at home are children whom you have a legal duty to support (they are yours).

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  • Can my common law husband claim my children on his tax return?

    I live in Texas, I'm divorced and I am the sole managing conservator of my children. I would like to know if I can legally allow my common law husband to claim my children and if so do I need to file any additional tax forms?

    Patricia’s Answer

    If you and your husband live together with your children, and you file jointly, I see no reason why you cannot claim them. If you are not filing jointly, I believe that you can give another person the right to claim the child, by signing an IRS form (8332).

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  • What can I do if my ex has moved and has not notified me of her whereabouts...

    This is something in the court order that she is obligated to notify me when she moves...

    Patricia’s Answer

    You can file an enforcement. The court's take these things very seriously. Talk with a good family law attorney about your options.

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  • How do I file for divorce when I don't know where this person is???

    He was in the military and we were already 6 months separated when he got kicked out.. He left and I don't know where he is... !! How do I file for divorce? We have no property, no children. I am only 22 years old and don't have any money.

    Patricia’s Answer

    You can get a divorce from someone who is absent, but it is technical and difficult. I do not recommend trying to do it without an attorney. You will have to file a petition for divorce, then prepare an affidavit to get the Court to allow you to publish notice. You will have to prepare all paperwork yourself, and do the Court appearance.

    Good luck to you.

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  • At what age may a child in Texas legally choose which parent they want to live with?

    My mother has legal custody of my sister, she is now 16. She would like to leave her custody and live with my father. Is she able to choose who she would like to live with? Do we have to return to family court and hire an attorney?

    Patricia’s Answer

    A child can legally decide where she/he wants to live at age 18 (when no longer a child). At age 12, if someone requests it, the Judge has to interview her, but the Judge will decide custody issues based on what the judge thinks is best for the child. Most judges give a lot of weight to what a 16 year old wants, but they don't have to do it. For custody to change, a modification must be filed and granted by a judge. If you think your mother will fight the change, then I would not suggest going to Court without an attorney.

    Good luck to you.

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  • Can I lose custody b/c I was sexually assaulted as a child - 25+ years ago?

    I was sexually assaulted as a child by a member of my extended family... 25+ years ago. I am in the middle of a custody battle where my ex is attempting to use this against me stating I have PTSD because of this assault .

    Patricia’s Answer

    • Selected as best answer

    The actual assault is not usable, but if it causes you to behave in abnormal ways, then they can use that. You should not be fighting this without an attorney. A good family law attorney can help you defend yourself and your children.

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  • Under temporary orders but she is not paying her attorney anymore does this mean that this divorce will never be final?

    I'm paying alimony till the divorce is final if it is not going to be finalized am I gonna have to pay forever I did not seek legal assistance or contest anything what are the stipulations in this case as far as the temporary orders?

    Patricia’s Answer

    Your divorce will either become final or be dismissed. If her lawyer is doing nothing, then dismissal is likely. It is in her interest to leave things as they are, since you are paying alimony. You should talk to a good family law attorney in your area to see what your options are.

    Good luck to you.

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