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originallawyer, Family Law Attorney
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 879
Experience:  9+ years of experience in divorce, custody battles and mediation.
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I'm a divorced mother of three--along with a son from

Customer Question

Hi, I'm a divorced mother of three--along with a son from another marriage to make four--who has had custody of the three children for 7 years.Recently, my ex--who was paying a paltry $550/month in support--stopped/delayed making payments, obviously in an effort to make me destitute so that he was in a position to file for custody. Which he has, and filed for a temporary hearing on Aug. 12.I am struggling to raise money for an attorney, but I fear I will run out of time and have to represent myself. (And yes, I'm pursuing legal aid as well, but they were closed at the end of July in Austin.) With that in mind I'm trying to have a couple key questions answered:1) The petition my ex's attorney filed for a temp hearing had no affidavit attached outlining a cause for hearing. The petition of course included the standard sentence that it was for the protection of the kids' emotional/physical well being/development. But that's it. There was no additional information submitted for cause. From my reading of the Texas Family code, an affidavit is required.2) Isn't there a way to have discovery before the actual temp hearing. In other words, I find it crazy that I can't have access to my ex's financial information before the hearing, as well as a list of witnesses they will have testify, any sworn statements, etc. How can anyone prepare to address allegations at a temp hearing without knowing the specific allegations!
JA: Who has legal custody? Is there a child custody order in place?
Customer: I have custody with existing order (pretty standard on visitation for my ex). He is petitioning to gain right to establish domecile and take kids.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: Not yet!
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  originallawyer replied 2 months ago.

Hello! Please stand by as I work on your answer!

Expert:  originallawyer replied 2 months ago.

1. If your ex isn't paying court ordered support, you need to file a counter motion for contempt on him for not paying his court ordered support. I find it laughable that he stopped paying you support and is now trying to use that as a reason to get custody. That line of reasoning will not go well for him.

2. You can file a motion to dismiss his pleading if it does not sufficiently outlined the grounds for changing custody.

3. Because of the timeline for discovery (30-45 days) while you could request discovery before the hearing, it's not likely that you would have what you needed before a temporary hearing. Temporary hearings are not as formal as final hearings, and often the Judge will ask the parties to confer before having the hearing, to see if an agreed temporary order can be made. If not, then the Judge would ask each party to state their side of the case and would then make a ruling.