Administrative

 

Q: Where are you located?
A: We are located in Katy, Texas on the Katy Freeway between Fry and Westgreen exits.  If you are familiar with the Katy area we are located in the Nottingham Country Building across from the Outback Steakhouse.

Q: Who do I contact if I have questions with my invoice or statement?
A: Our accounts person is Dayna Sanders.  She may be reached via phone 281-579-6044 or via email Dayna@levinandatwood.com

Q:  What can I expect when I have an appointment with an attorney at your office?
A: You will be given an information sheet to fill out when you arrive in our office.  Next, we will introduce you to your attorney and bring you to an office or conference room.  You will have your meeting and your attorney will review any documents you have brought with you and give you possible options/solutions for your issue.  You will then need to decide whether or not to hire the attorney.  At that time you will usually be given a retainer agreement to sign and asked for an initial retainer, unless other arrangements have been made.

Q: Can I request that an attorney from your office review a contract prior to meeting with them?
A: Yes, you may contact our office and discuss this option with an attorney.  In cases of long agreements such as lease agreements, this would be a better option, so that your attorney can review the agreement prior to your meeting.  However, you need to be aware that your attorney will expect that you sign a retainer agreement and provide a retainer prior to their reviewing any agreements.

Legal

 

Q: I want to start a business in Texas. What is the first step in starting a business in Texas?
A: Typically, the first step in starting a business in Texas is the formation of the company. Texas has several legal forms of business models available, and our attorneys can assist you with your choice of entity. Our law firm can assist with the formation of Texas corporations, formation of a Texas limited liability company (LLC), general and limited partnerships (GP or L.P.), limited liability partnerships (L.L.P.), professional entities (Texas professional limited liability company — P.L.L.C., Texas professional corporations — P.C., and Professional Associations, P.A.s) and Texas sole proprietorships (d/b/a or doing business as).  Our law firm can assist you in selecting the appropriate entity for your business, the formation and operation of the business as well as maintenance, contracts, and litigation.

Q: Why would I use an attorney to form a business in Texas? Couldn’t I use an online business start up company or forms?
A: Many people have asked us about incorporating on-line, using a non-attorney service or by using free legal forms. If your new business is something in which you plan to make a living, or in which you plan to invest money, self-service incorporation or do-it-yourself legal kits might not be the most cost effective move. There are many different types of business entities, each with their own advantages and disadvantages. Your selection of entity should be made with the advice of a professional to ensure that your objectives are met. Additionally, once a charter is issued, there is more paperwork to do, such as initial organizational meetings, drafting of operational documents (bylaws, operating agreements, regulations, etc.) and business succession matters.

Q: Another company owes me for a past due invoice. Can you file suit to collect?
A: This tends to be one of the more common types of litigation. Essentially, a business will offer goods and/or services on a revolving account basis to another. When those invoices remain unpaid, litigation may be necessary. The typical first step is to assemble all written documents exchanged between the parties. Next, a demand letter stating that the other party is in breach of the arrangement would be sent, detailing what the other side needs to do in order to rectify the situation. Should the sides fail to reach a settlement, then the side owed money can file a suit in which a representative of the company that issued the invoices swears to the truthfulness of the invoices. This is called a “sworn account suit”   This forces the other side to have to file a sworn answer stating that they do not owe the invoices.

Q: What does litigation of business disputes involve?
A: Litigation means filing a civil lawsuit to resolve a dispute. The process includes finding an attorney, filing a suit, conducting discovery, arguing pretrial motions, presenting the case at trial, and sometimes appealing the judgment. At any point throughout the litigation process, the parties may negotiate to settle the case.  It can be a lengthy process depending on the parties, the court systems and the opposing attorney.

Q: Do I have to prove fault of the other spouse to get a divorce?
A: No. You do not have to show fault to get a divorce in Texas.

Q: Where do I have to file for divorce?
A: You may file for divorce in either the county where you or your spouse resides.  However, there are certain time limitations that may affect this.  If you have recently moved from one county to another, you need to have been a resident of the new county for at least 90 days before you may file there.

Q: How long do I need to be in Texas before I can file for divorce, or do something else related to my family law case?
A: You need to have lived within Texas for a minimum of six (6) months for Texas to gain jurisdiction.  You should be able to show proof of such residency.

Q: How long does it take to get a divorce?
A: One of the most difficult questions to answer.  There is a minimum time mandated by the Texas Family Code of 60 days from the time of filing before a divorce may be signed and entered by the court.  However, that is only the bottom limit.  There is no real top limit as to how long it can possibly take, except for the patience of the court.  Generally speaking, uncontested divorces are usually completed within 75 days from the time they are filed.  Depending on the level of contested issues in a case, they may last up to 1.5 to 2 years.  We do everything we can to reduce the time, but it takes both sides coming to an agreement to move things along faster and sometimes such agreements simply do not occur.

Q: What is a guardianship and what is it used for?
A: A parent is a guardian of their minor child, but after the child reaches the age of 18 the child effectively becomes their own guardian.  However, if for reasons of incapacity or disability of some nature an individual, though legally an adult cannot make their own decisions in such a way as to adequately protect and provide for themselves, they may need another person to act as their guardian in adult life.  Many persons who have suffered traumatic brain injury are in need of guardianships by a member of their family or friends, as do persons who have suffered from strokes or related medical events.  The Guardian is able to step into the shoes of the effected person and render decisions and take actions on their behalf.  Guardianships are very often used by the children of an elderly parent who, because of illness or injury, is no longer able to take action on matters which typically require their competency, such as the making of wills, the selling of property, payment of debts, transferring property, etc.  Some of these actions may be handled also through various power of attorney documents, but the Guardian, once appointed by the court, is able to take any such actions on behalf of the person on whose behalf they are appointed with no further action necessary in court.