Texas Laws

Trusts in Texas

A Trust is a legal chameleon. What is a Trust At its most basic, a trust is an agreement by a fiduciary (the trustee)  to hold property for the benefit of another.  A trust is not a separate legal entity. There are three players in a trust – the settlor (who establishes and sometimes funds the trust), the trustee (who administers the trust) and the beneficiary (who benefits from the trust). A trust...

Legal vs Ethical Responsibilities

The Post-Thanksgiving Blues Reflections Bring Good Cheer With any luck, you have finished waving goodbye to the last of the relatives and returned to your home.  Home, a place where you can reminisce in private about all of the real and imagined slights, jabs and jibes made by that graceless, greedy, egocentric, are-you-sure-we-are-even-related mob.   Too soon?   Let’s steer your emotions towards a more productive use by reflecting on the differences between your moral...

How To Start An LLC In Texas

Join the Club -  The Exclusive, Elusive Texas LLC Limited Liability Companies are all the rage in business circles.  You need to know the basics if you have any aspirations at all to run with the in-crowd.  You may eventually decide that you need to bring at least one LLC into your life. An LLC is a creature of statute.  Since we’re in Texas, we will focus on LLCs created under...

How to Self-Prove a Will In Texas

One of the most common problems with legal documents arises when you take your documents to the bank to be signed, witnessed or notarized. An employee of a bank may be able to witness your document or notarize it, but what the employee cannot do is give you legal advice about the document or what legally is required for the document to be valid. What is A Will? A classic example...

Guardianship Reform at the Forefront of State Policies

It is easy to criticize a state government, but we should also give credit where it is due. Texas has been recognized as a model for other states for its Guardianship Abuse Fraud and Exploitation Deterrence Program. That is guardianship reform, folks, and it is a good thing.  The population of Texans 65+ is projected to double to 6 million by 2030. Since 2014, the Texas Judicial Council has been studying guardianship...

Privacy for the Deceased: Law Provides Limited Protection

Suppose your father, an intensely private person, dies as the result of a bizarre murder-for-hire scheme. The press is everywhere, demanding family public statements, autopsy results and funeral arrangements.   Some fanatic even sends out a tweet soliciting protestors for your father’s graveside service. You wonder what you can do to secure your father’s privacy after death. The answer starts with the general principle that a person’s right to privacy lapses at his...

Into the Line of Fire – Federal Gun Laws Stymie Estate Executors

It is fairly common when a gun owner dies for his or her probate estate to end up holding firearms. That may be hazardous for the probate executor and the beneficiaries, whose ignorance of the federal and state gun laws could result in some pretty lengthy jail time. First, some background. Texas lightly regulates the buying and selling of firearms. In contrast, the federal government heavily regulates every part of the...

Gun Trusts in Texas

We’re Texans, and we love our guns. In fact, Texans own more National Firearms Act weapons than any other state. And that is why we all need to know about gun trusts. A gun trust is a convenient method to own an NFA firearm and comply with the fairly complex Federal laws. Why is that important?  Because violating the Federal gun laws can result in fines (up to $10,000), imprisonment (up...

Texas – Immediate Probate Actions

“He died with his boots on.” Admirable, but he left the rest of us to deal with his assets and debts. Where to start?  First,  we want to find his will and any burial instructions.  Since he didn’t tell anybody the location of  his documents before he rode off into the sunset, we’ll look in a logical place:  his safety deposit box.  The bank  may allow access without a court order...

Gun Trusts

By Virginia Hammerle, Attorney   Guns are regulated by a mix of federal and state laws.   Probating an estate that contains guns can be difficult, and could even expose the executor to criminal penalties. The National Firearms Act,  the Gun Control Act of 1968 and, most recently, the Firearm Owners’ Protection Act  outlines gun regulation for certain types of firearms,  such as machine guns, suppressors, short-barreled shotguns (sawed-off shotguns), and destructive devices...

ODL and ALR in Texas – Driving after a DWI in Texas

One thing most of us take for granted is having a driver’s license.  Each day we jump behind the wheel and drive to work, run errands, pick kids up from school, or go wherever it is we need to go without thinking twice about it.  Now imagine your life without a driver’s license.  How are you going to get to and from work?  What happens if your child gets...

Texas Custody Disputes

Can't we all just agree? No.  And maybe  that's a good thing. Sometimes the stakes are too high for compromise in a Texas child custody case.   In those types of child custody cases, you  need an aggressive child custody attorney in your corner.   The family law attorneys at Hammerle Finley Law Firm may be able to help. Texas child custody cases between parents  usually arise in three types of situations.  First, there are the unmarried parents...
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