Click here for answers to frequently-asked family law questions in the state of disaster.
The Family Law Section of the Houston Bar Association promotes the goals of the HBA within the community of family lawyers in Houston. With a membership of almost 500 attorneys, the Section includes family law attorneys with a wide range of backgrounds, knowledge and experiences who serve to mentor and encourage one another in addressing the many complex issues that can arise in family law cases. At the monthly meetings, members have access to quality CLE programming as well as an opportunity to network among other family lawyers and the family law judiciary.
Family Law Section leadership and members consistently give back to the community through organized events geared to assisting those in need, including:
- Providing monthly updates of pertinent case law to its members;
- Sponsoring CLE programs for family law attorneys;
- Volunteer efforts at HBA legal clinics;
- Staffing family law attorneys for the HBA’s monthly LegalLine program;
- Contributing annually to projects such as Habitat for Humanity;
- Grading thousands of Houston student essays entered in the national “Do the Write Thing” writing competition;
- Collecting and contributing to HBA’s “Dress for Success” program;
The HBA Family Law Section, one of the oldest among HBA sections, consistently strives to equip its membership with all the tools necessary to better serve those Houston and Harris County families in need of quality family law legal services.
Join this and other sections online by clicking here, or by completing this form. If you are a new licensee, a third-year law student or an LL.M. candidate, you are eligible for free section membership for one year — learn more by calling the HBA membership department at (713) 759-1133. Click here to return to the Sections Landing Page.
Check out the Family Law Section's April 8 Virtual CLE, "Zoom, or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Have Remote Hearings"
Frequently Asked Family Law Questions
I have a court order in place. Should it be followed during a “shelter-in-place” or “stay-at home order?”
Yes. As of March 24, 2020, the Supreme Court of the State of Texas issued an order stating that all existing trial court orders currently in effect regarding possession and access shall control. Parties should continue to follow the schedule for visitation in their orders.
Should I expect a delay in my child support payments?
The Office of the Attorney General has issued a statement advising that they do not anticipate a delay in the processing of any child support payments received due to the coronavirus. The State Disbursement Unit and payment processing teams have a strong plan in place to ensure that payments continue to be processed and disbursed timely.
When am I able to get a hearing set?
Until further notice, the Harris County District Courts are not having in-person hearings except in emergency situations. Beginning April 1, 2020, some hearings may be set via video-conferencing. You should look at the website of the specific court your case is in for further information as each court is issuing their own specific rules.
Why is no one answering the phone?
Based upon the directives issued by Government Officials this week, many offices including law firms, court clerks, the Harris County District Clerk, and the Office of the Attorney General are working remotely. Please visit websites and contact staff via email.
Are my child custody orders affected by the stay-at-home order and COVID-19?
No. The Texas Supreme Court issued an emergency order on Tuesday that applies to possession schedules under suits affecting the parent-child relationship. The order says that a person’s right to possession of and access to a child will still be decided under the parents’ court-ordered possession schedule.
“Possession of and access to a child shall not be affected by any shelter-in-place order or other order restricting movement issued by a governmental entity that arises from an epidemic or pandemic, including what is commonly referred to as the COVID-19 pandemic,” the order said.
But, If you have been tested positive for COVID-19, or have been in contact with someone who has tested positive, notify your child's other co-parent. It is important that parents work together to keep any adult or child who has been exposed or tested positive away from others in order to prevent community spread. If you or your child has been tested or treated by a physician, you should share that information with the other co-parent so they know you are not using this situation to withhold visitation unnecessarily but rather due to a health concern.
For answers to more frequently-asked family law questions, visit sll.texas.gov.
Monthly meetings are held at the Downtown Club at Houston Center, 1100 Caroline Street, Houston 77002.
The Downtown Club is located in the First City Tower garage, on the top floor labeled “C” in the NE elevators. Public parking is located on the left hand side of Lamar Street just past Caroline Street.
There are no upcoming events at this time.
Kelly Fritsch, Attorney at Law
Immediate Past Chair
Angela Stout, The Stout Law Firm, P.L.L.C.
Amy Allen, Gray Reed & McGraw
Tammy Moon, The Simien Moon Law Firm
Jennifer Caras, Schlanger, Silver, Barg & Paine, LLP
Section Members: 499
- For 3 years or less: $35
- For 4 years or more: $45
Law Student Policies
Cost of lunch ($30 if paid in advance, $35 at the door).