Woodley & Dudley

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Comanche Family Law And Criminal Defense Blog

What are the penalties for underage drinking?

If you drink and drive in Texas, you face harsh penalties. However, if you drink and drive and you are under 21, the law is even harsher. Not only are you driving under the influence but also you have consumed alcohol while being under the legal age to do so.

The first offense, according to Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission, will earn you a driver's license suspension of 60 days and a fine up to $500. You must also do 20 to 40 hours of community service and attend a mandatory alcohol awareness class.

What do I need to know about adoption?

If you’re thinking of adopting a child in Texas, you probably know there is a long road ahead of you. While the process can be complex, having the right information will help you navigate it successfully and with as little stress possible. Parents answers the following questions to ensure you understand what it takes to adopt a child and are fully prepared to do so.

What information should I provide?

Texas on the road to legalizing pot?

In case you are one of many Americans who have been sidetracked by the many and ongoing political spectacles at the federal level, there have been some interesting political moments right here in Texas over the past few months. Moments that may lead to the legalization of marijuana in the Lone Star State, and within the next few years.

Forbes reports that the state Republican Party, during its summer convention, adopted several new planks in its platform. One supports the decriminalization of marijuana, making it a civil penalty to possess an ounce or less for personal use. The civil penalty would come with a fine of up to $100 but would not include jail time. Another plank is seeking expansion of the state’s medical marijuana law by giving physicians the authority to determine the appropriate amount for patients. Also coming from the convention was the party’s stance in support of growing industrial hemp and federal reclassification of the drug as well.

What help is available to assist with child visitation?

If you are your children's other parent are not together, you probably have a custody and visitation arrangement set up through a Texas court. While you may try to honor the court's orders, sometimes things can get complicated. It is important for you to stick to the orders to avoid issues, so if you need help, the state offers some options. The Attorney General notes that these visitation resources are provided to you for free by the state.

First, you can use the Access and Visitation Directory. This is an online listing of services that help with visitation and parenting after a divorce. This directory can help you find places where you can conduct supervised visits, get help coordinating your visitation process and provide drop-off centers where you can meet to exchange the children.

Possible defenses to DWI charges in Texas

When the police arrest you for supposed drunk driving, it may feel like the end of the world. Questions may swarm your mind: Will you lose your driving privileges? Will you have to spend any time in jail? How much will the fines cost? How will you tell your loved ones what happened?

Another question you may consider is if it is best to plead guilty, especially if you feel the evidence against you is significant and condemning. However, despite your circumstances, defenses for your DWI case are possible.

Preventing divorce from destroying your children

There is little else as unsettling as knowing that your marriage is coming to an end. You have exhausted all of your resources and you and your spouse have decided that separating is your best option to overcoming marital problems and moving forward with life. At Woodley & Dudley Lawyers, we have helped many people in Texas to work through the legal process of securing a divorce, arranging child custody and negotiating the separation of shared assets. 

If you and your spouse have had children together, chances are that your children are one of your primary concerns as you begin working through your divorce. Fortunately, there are all kinds of resources that you can draw upon to help your children cope without ignoring their emotional needs or downplaying the seriousness of your changing family dynamic. According to Psychology Today, one of the most important things for you to remember is that your children will benefit the most if you and your ex are able to maintain an amicable relationship despite having separated. The more contentious and bitter your battle, the more your children will be affected by the drama and tension they are exposed to. You can help your children adjust by providing them with both physical and emotional necessities including the following:

  • Housing, food, water and clothing.
  • A listening ear and emotional support. 
  • A stable household and consistent schedule.
  • Discipline that is both fair and appropriate for their age.

How to speak with your kids about divorce

Divorce is rarely easy. For couples in Texas, one of the most difficult aspects of a divorce is telling their children the news. While your kids are bound to experience negative emotions about the split, there are steps you can take to deliver the news in a kind and loving manner. That’s why HealthyChildren.org recommends the following advice when talking to your kids about divorce.

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Which drugs are in penalty group one?

It is no secret that Texas law is tough on crime, especially infractions involving controlled substances. Even considering this default hard-line stance, enforcement could border on overzealous when the alleged crimes include possession or delivery of penalty group one substances. If you stood accused of such a crime, it would likely be in your best interest to build the strongest case possible in your defense: the stakes tend to be high in these situations.

If you were convicted of a crime associated with any drug in penalty group one, you would have a felony on your record. Your minimum sentence could range from 180 days to 15 years. These penalties would be for possession with intent to deliver — under a gram to over 400 grams, respectively.

Common adoption myths

Adoption is a complex process. The placing of a child into a home of someone other than the parents puts a huge burden on the State of Texas. If something were to go wrong, it often falls to the state to handle the fallout. Because of this, the state takes its responsibility seriously, which results in a complex process. However, there are some myths about adoption that have led to people avoiding the process, which only hurts the children involved in the end.

According to Adoptive Families, one of the harmful myths that is commonly bantered about is that adoption takes years. This is not true at all. Most adoptions are completed in less than a year. Another issue is that people think only perfect families can adopt. You may think you have to be rich and live in a huge home with a loving spouse. This is also untrue because adoption is about finding a loving family and that is it. As long as you can provide for the child, you do not need to have a lot of money, a big home or even be married.

When taking your medicine leads to DWI charges

Texas law prohibits driving while in a condition of intoxication due to consuming a substance that affects physical or mental function. While you may know you can face charges if you drive after taking illegal drugs or drinking too much, a DWI charge can also involve someone who just took medication according to a valid prescription.

Some types of medications have a reputation for causing side effects that impair driving. These include painkillers, allergy medications, anxiety drugs, antidepressants and hypertension drugs. Both over-the-counter and prescription drugs can lead to impairment and, therefore, DWI charges.

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