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The O’Connell Law Firm, P.C. – Learn More About Us

Video Transcript:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday. Thanks for joining me.
I am the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm in Lake Dallas. I wanted to take a few minutes today to reintroduce myself for those of you who are just finding our videos or have maybe seen a few others and let you know a little bit about me and my office.

As I said earlier, we’re in Lake Dallas, which is almost the middle of Denton County and so we are conveniently located right off of, excuse me, I35 and it is an easy drive from almost anywhere in Denton County.

We are also exclusively family law. So family law includes divorce and the issues that go with divorce, any post-divorce issues, things having to do with child support, child custody and anything that relates to the family.

In that, we also only focus in Denton County at this time. We are exclusively Denton County because of the way that I believe that it serves our clients right now.

We can be reached by phone, email, we’re on social media, and the phone number to make an appointment is (940) 497-5454. If you’ve got a question specific to your case, if you find yourself in a divorce, either one that’s expected or unexpectedly, I am happy to visit with you more specifically about what’s going on in your life and we do that through a consultation.

Again, you can reach us at (940) 497-5454.

One on Wednesday™ –
Coronavirus Update

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, this is One on Wednesday™ with Jill O’Connell, and I’m going to visit with you today about some things to think about if you’re feeling like your divorce or family law case has gotten stuck because of the coronavirus and COVID-19 restrictions on our courts. This time is coming somewhat to an end because the Denton County courts have been authorized to reopen and start setting some in-person hearings in the courtroom beyond the limited essential ones that they were doing before.

However, there is still going to be a backlog. Not everything is going to move as quickly as it once did, and it may never have felt quickly to you, but as quickly as it was, it’s not going to get back there right away. So, some things to consider are some ways to look at resolving your disputes with your soon to be ex-spouse or ex-spouse if it’s a family law case, and consider negotiation. The attorneys can negotiate by phone or email and go back and forth, and they can just use the tools that they have as attorneys to negotiate. Working with your attorney to figure out your goals and perhaps think about resolving through negotiation is the way to begin that process. Let your attorney know.

Secondly, mediation. In some circumstances, in person mediation can now happen and there’s still online mediation. That’s always a good option. And that’s important because you can even set a mediation for a shorter amount of time if you have some temporary issues that need to be met and you cannot get into the courtroom for a long time. Again, negotiation can also work there.

There’s also another informal settlement method that can be used if you’re on a speaking basis with your ex or soon to be ex, and you might be able to sit down and hammer out some ways to resolve the issues that you’ve got going on in your case. So, just here to encourage you, even if you’re backlogged, you can’t get into the courtroom, as soon as you would like to, there are some other means and ways to resolve your case outside of the courtroom. If you’ve got questions about any of those things, feel free to call me (972) 203-6644. I’m happy to visit with you about all of those methods and/or your case. If you’d like to I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday.

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One on Wednesday™ –
Online Mediation

Jill O’Connell, Online Mediator:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. I am going to visit with you today about online mediation. In this day and age with all of the coronavirus closings and reopenings and the different phases that we’re in, the courts are affected by the coronavirus too. And if you have an ongoing case, you already know that. I’m not telling you anything that’s coming as a surprise.

Jill O’Connell, Online Mediator:

But what is somewhat surprising to people is that mediations can still happen even if we can’t meet in person. Now in Texas, we do have the phases of reopening, and there are some qualifications in there. So, sometimes a mediation in person might be possible in the near future.

Jill O’Connell, Online Mediator:

But an online mediation can happen using an online platform. The mediator can still protect your privacy and your confidentiality by using the platform well and preparing you for the ways that that can be done. It is worth it if it keeps your case moving forward, if you are able to come to an agreement that you can live with, and if you are able to avoid what is going to be a backlog at the courthouse, and resolve your case in a way that might be more efficient and more cost efficient as well for you to consider online mediation.

Jill O’Connell, Online Mediator:

I’ve taken training. I am a trained online mediator bringing my years of mediation experience to the online platform. I’m available. If you have any questions, you can reach me at 972-203-6644.

One on Wednesday™ – Certified Health & Wellness Coach

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday. I am a family law and divorce attorney in Lewisville, and you can reach me at 972-203-6644. I’m visiting today with National Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach, Jill Hawkins about how we can be resilient during this time of the coronavirus pandemic. Jill, why don’t you start by telling us a little bit about yourself, where people can find more about you and then tell us those things that we’ve discussed that are such good practices we can incorporate right now.

Jill Hawkins:

Yeah. Jill, thank you so much for having me on. My name is Jill Hawkins. I do practice health and wellness coaching here in the North Texas area. You can find all of my information and you can contact me at hawkinswellness.com. But yeah, we’ve talked about the stress response and the brain and how when we’re in a situation like we are now, long extended periods of stress. Two things to know about the brain, emotions can flood the middle part of our brain and it cause a reaction with the stress response.

Jill Hawkins:

And the other thing that’s interesting is that our brains are hardwired for negativity. We actually have more neuron activity for negative. Both of these things keep us protected. They help us in times of danger, but we don’t want to be thinking we’re stressed. We don’t want to be reacting out of stress. What we want to do is slow all of that down and calm that down so that we can have better creative problem solving skills. So two activities that people can do to help alleviate the stress response. One of them is a practice of gratitude and you can do it at any time, any part of your day, when you’re feeling stress or emotion, just take three deep breaths and open your eyes and get present in reality of the moment and find three things that you’re grateful for and doing that can really help calm down those stress emotions and help open up your brain for better thinking.

Jill Hawkins:

The second activity is to start a What Went Well journal. At the end of the day, take a piece of paper or a journal and write down three things that went well that day, and that can overcome a critic in our head. And again, it’s a normal brain activity to think about negative, but what went well, three things that went well at the end of the day can actually help bring in more positivity. So those are two activities that can help us respond with creative thinking rather than react out of stress.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

All right, so gratitude practice any time of day and went well at the end of the day, those are some great tools to give us all a better perspective right now. Thanks for being with me today. I’m Jill O’Connell, this is One on Wednesday and you can find me or reach me at 972-203-6644. Thanks.

Jill Hawkins:

Bye-bye.

 

One on Wednesday™ – Randi Dukes Buying A House

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell, a family law and divorce attorney in Lewisville. And I am visiting today with Randi Dukes, realtor in Old Town Lewisville about how we can find a real estate agent, if we need one, during this coronavirus quarantine time. Randi, do you have any tips for us today?

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

I do. So I would say in this weird time, probably the best tip is ask your friends. Most people know somebody or worked with somebody that they loved. And that’s always a great way to connect with somebody. Buying or selling a home is such a personal time. And I think you should really have somebody that you click with, somebody that you just feel some kind of [inaudible 00:00:42] who you’re not afraid to ask a ton of questions, and that you feel is really working for you.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

And is that what you would tell your friends and family.

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

I would. You want somebody who understands your needs. Someone who’s going to get excited about the process, or commiserate the process. Buying and selling home. Isn’t always happy as you know, in your business. Sometimes it’s super joyful and sometimes it’s just really hard and you want somebody who will just walk that process with you and coach you through it.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Yeah, I agree. Thanks Randi. For those people who find themselves in that situation, as you said, either in a joyful moment or maybe a difficult moment, those are good tips to find a real estate agent. Randi is with repeat Realty in Old Town Lewisville, and you can find her on every social media. Thanks, Randi.

One on Wednesday™ – Randi Dukes Selling A Home

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Hi. I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™. This is a little bit of a different version of One on Wednesday. Today I’ve got with me realtor, Randi Dukes, who is going to visit with me about what to do if you find yourself in the spot of having to sell your home during this time.

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

Right, because people do still have to buy and sell houses, despite the fact that we’re practicing social distancing and living in a time of quarantine. As you know, real estate is deemed essential, which is great news because people do need to buy and sell. So the market is still moving. It has slowed a bit in DFW, but we’re lucky that it is still moving. And because inventory is low in certain price ranges, houses are actually still moving really quickly. So that’s great. It’s exciting to see.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Let me stop you right there. So you are a real estate agent in the whole North Texas area. Would that be accurate?

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

That’s right. Yep.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Okay. And your office is located in-

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

Old Town Lewisville. I’m with Repeat Realty, which his right in the heart of Old Town Lewisville. So we service this entire area, all of North Texas really.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Great. So then if houses are selling because there is some low inventory, what and how are you doing that? Is it just business as usual or how are you proceeding?

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

It’s not quite business as usual. Like most markets, we’ve all had to change and get a little creative with what’s going on. So from start to finish, we’re still doing a lot of things the same. Somebody finds an agent, we write up a listing agreement for the home and then marketing looks a little bit different right now. So instead of having people trek through houses the way they always have for standard showings, a lot of people don’t want that type of traffic in their home.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Understandably, right?

Randi Dukes, Realtor:
Right. And some people do. So if the home is vacant or the client doesn’t mind people coming through, standard showings can still take place. Otherwise, we’re doing a lot of virtual showings. So I might walk through a house, FaceTime my client and show them the ins and outs. Open houses are looking a little different. Instead of a standard open house, there are a lot of virtual open houses taking place. So an agent would do a Facebook Live, showing people all of the quirks and mammies, quicks and crannies-
Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Nooks and crannies?

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

What am I trying to say? Of the house. There are 360 videos being done. Just a lot of really creative ways. And then appraisals and inspections are still taking place as they always did. Those are also essential services. And closing is up to the title company, so they’re doing creative things as well. Curbside closings, where they bring papers out to the car, virtual closings, whatever they’re equipped to handle.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

So just taking whatever kind of creative precautions they can to keep everybody safe during this time.

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

Right. And agents are taking a lot of precautions, wearing gloves, wearing masks, practicing social distancing, wiping down surfaces when they do go to look- Really cautious.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

Great. So it’s not totally bad news, if somebody needs to sell a house right now and that’s definitely reassuring. And I just want to tell everybody, if they’re looking to reach Randi, she’s got a website. She’s on social media. She’s going to give you her phone number in a minute. And there are lots of ways to reach her, if you find yourself looking for a real estate agent right now. So Randi, again, is with Repeat Realty. She’s Randi Dukes, Realtor, on almost all social media. And Randi, remind us what your website is.

Randi Dukes, Realtor:

Right. My website is randidukesrealtor.com. So that’s easy to find. And you can reach me by email, phone, text, at 214-223-0443. And I’d love to chat with you just about the process of what it looks like to sell a house in this market.

Jill O’Connell, Attorney:

All right. Thanks, Randi.

Randi Dukes, Realtor:
Thanks.

One on Wednesday™ – Child Support Modification

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill, O’Connell the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm, and today’s topic on One on Wednesday™ is child support modification. If you have experienced a reduction in income, a temporary furlough, or a total reduction of your income, you may be wondering if child support modification is right for you at this time.

Jill O’Connell:

And if you are receiving child support, you may be wondering those same questions for the person who’s paying child support and how that’s going to affect you. These types of circumstances are all going to be fact-specific, but it may be the situation that child support modification is appropriate at this time. If you’ve got questions about whether or not you can reduce your child support, you should reach out to an attorney and discuss what’s happened to your income and let them discuss the statutory factors that can enable you to get a reduction in your child support.

Jill O’Connell:

And if you are receiving child support, this may be something that you should consider as well in understanding what could be coming in the future for you and how you can plan for that as well. I am Jill O’Connell the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm, and you can reach me at 972-203-6644. If you’ve got questions about child support or child support modification, you can call us and we’re happy to meet with you. Thanks.

One on Wednesday™ –
Perspective

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One On Wednesday. Today I’d like to visit with you about perspective. Perspective is important to keep in mind in any family law or divorce case because research shows and tells us that divorce and family law issues are some of the biggest stressors that one can have as they go through life. And if you are there, you know that to be through, you don’t need research to tell you that. But perspective is an important thing to remember because you’re going to go through your case and it’s a journey. You’re going to go through different phases of the litigation process, whether you’re in formal litigation or you’re using some alternatives, and your emotional health is going to go on that journey as, uh, as your litigation goes. And it’s important to keep a good support system, to keep your perspective healthy and it’s important to realize that the lawyer’s part of your support system but not the entire part of your support system.

Jill O’Connell:

My perspective is different than a mental health professional, it’s different than a licensed counselor’s for sure. Your friends and your family have a different perspective entirely from both the mental health professional and your lawyer. This is important and good for you but also important to remember that everyone comes at your particular situation from a different perspective as well. So when you are going through that journey remember that you have a perspective and those in your support team have different perspectives. And when you’re listening to advice, taking advice, heeding their counsel, put all of that into the big picture and keep all of those at the forefront so that you have the best and the most healthy perspective that you can have in your situation.

Jill O’Connell:

Again, I’m Jill O’Connell. I am a family law and divorce attorney in Lewisville, Texas, O’Connell Law Firm. You can find us on the web, on social. You can find us on our website, oconnellfirm.com, and you can call us. I’m happy to meet with you, answer your questions and, uh, discuss any issues you might like to in a divorce or family law case. (940) 497-5454 and (972) 203-6644.

One on Wednesday™ – Texas Standard Possession

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi. Do you find yourself asking questions about standard possession? Is your soon-to-be ex spouse may- maybe opposing counsel, maybe even your lawyer, keeps referring to standard possession and you’re just not sure what that means. I’m gonna give you a little bit of information today, very basic information about standard possession in Texas.

Jill O’Connell:

A question I get quite a bit is why is it called standard possession? Do we have to do it? Does everybody do it? I’m gonna answer that question very quickly; it’s called standard possession because that’s what the Texas Family Code refers to it as, and has titled it in that way. Not everybody getting a divorce in Texas has to use a standard possession and it does not apply to everyone because there are some options that you can choose. Who does it apply to? A standard possession schedule, can apply in your case to both parents. if a standard possession schedule is used, it will have terms for both parents. How does it have those terms included? The Family Code provides for parents being called conservators in a divorce decree. And that term that you can sometimes hear with that is conservatorship. And there are different types of conservators, but parents will be conservators in the decree as it refers to possession and access to their kids.

Jill O’Connell:

What else does it include, is- is very often, uh, a question I get. What kinds of things are in that standard possession schedule? It includes a school year schedule, it includes a summer schedule, it includes a holiday schedule, and some very, um, broadly applied terms and conditions basically rules to follow and follow the procedure and it includes provisions for when both parents live within 100 miles of each other. And when the parents do not live within 100 miles of each other.

Jill O’Connell:

These are just the basics. I hope that if you’ve got some basic questions, this has helped you. If we can help you understand more about standard possession, help you review your orders if you’re already divorced and you’re not sure, uh, what your supposed to be doing in your standard possession. You can call us at 940-497-5454. My team is waiting to help you with your case.

Jill O’Connell:

Jill O’Connell Lewisville, Texas.

One on Wednesday™ – Standard Possession Summer Notice

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi. Today is April 1st. I’m Jill O’Connell, the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm. And this is the COVID-19 version, episode of One on Wednesday™. And let’s be honest, uh, the days don’t go as we thought they would, uh, two weeks ago, three weeks ago. And, uh, I’m coming to you from my car, which is not, uh, my usual location. And, uh, we’re all having to make some adjustments.

Jill O’Connell:

Today I wanna remind you, that if you are a divorcing parent or a divorced parent, to take a look at your deadlines. You may have an April 1st deadline that you have to give notice for summer possession. So while that seems so far off and difficult to picture from where we are today, I’m gonna say, go on a hopeful note, plan for the best, hope for the best, plan for extended summer time with your kids, and if you’ve got an April 1st notice, give that notice today so you don’t miss anything. And if you don’t know, read your decree and find out if you do.

Jill O’Connell:

If you’ve got questions, I am, uh, still working. We are working in some different ways than, than traditionally. However, we’re available by phone, electronic conferencing, and, uh, other ways to help you through this time. You can reach us at 972-203-6644 and 940-497-5454. I’m in Louisville. Jill O’Connell, O’Connell Law Firm.

One on Wednesday™ – Mediation

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi. I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™. Today’s topic is about mediation. As you know, I’m an attorney, and I focus on divorce and family law. And you may not know I’m also a qualified mediator. I mediate privately, and I volunteer, uh, in a program in Denton County. And I mediate for others going through family law and divorce cases. And I use mediation in my practice as well.

Jill O’Connell:

So I often get questions about, uh, mediation, so I’m gonna tell you a little bit about what mediation is and what it looks like today. In a family law case, most often, uh, the mediation will begin with one party and, um, his or her attorney in one room and the other party and his or her attorney in the other room. And, um, the mediator goes between the two rooms. Most of the time, it begins that way. S-… The second part of mediation is that there is an offer and then a reply to that offer, and the negotiation will go back and forth. The mediator typically is the one who works through that negotiation in either room. And, uh, the attorneys and parties generally don’t see each other at all through the course of the mediation day.

Jill O’Connell:

And then finally at the end of the day, the mediator is a neutral party. There are no decisions made by the mediator. It all comes down to the parties and this is an agreement that they can agree to fully and agree to put their signature on. And the mediator goes from there. The mediator does not make any decisions. And, um, the mediation ends either with an agreement or with an understanding of what’s going to happen next.

Jill O’Connell:

So that’s mediation, very abbreviated summary of mediation. Uh, kind of a nutshell. Maybe even smaller than a nutshell version of mediation. If you’ve got questions about whether or not mediation will work in your case, uh, how you can approach mediation in your case, visit with me about questions you’ve got about divorce, and maybe you can use mediation. You can give us a call. (972) 203-6644 or (940) 497-5454. And you can find us on social media and the website oconnellfirm.com. I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™.

One on Wednesday™ – Emergency Orders

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm, PC and this March 25th 2020 version of One on Wednesday™. The topic today that I’m bringing to you is about the emergency Denton County Orders to shelter in place and how that can affect family law and divorce cases.

Jill O’Connell:

If you are in a family law or divorce case and have questions about how this emergency order affects you, I would say contact a family law or divorce attorney to get your questions answered.

Jill O’Connell:

However, if you are looking for information, what I wanted to do today is tell you some specifics. The emergency orders can be found on https://dentoncounty.gov and those are being updated as frequently as they are being issued and/or amended. So you can, again, go to the website dentoncounty.gov and you will see the banners for those orders.

Jill O’Connell:

The other thing I want you to know is that the courts have not shut down totally. They are not doing jury trials, they are not conducting business in the normal way. But if you have a need for particular things that are essential or extraordinary, again contact a family law or divorce attorney. The courts are operating just in a way that’s different than their normal means.

Jill O’Connell:

They are using Zoom to conduct proceedings that are necessary. And then I also want you to know that the District Court Judges in Denton County are very aware of the needs of those people who are in proceedings and who have orders, dealing with families in family law issues and/or divorces. And they have also just recently issued, and I’m just gonna look and, read it directly from the order. A temporary standing order regarding possession and access during the COVID-19 emergency declaration.

Jill O’Connell:

So the courts are very aware that people have needs that cannot just wait until this emergency order is finished. So if you’ve got questions, you have an emergency, you don’t know what to do. Contact a family law attorney and get your questions answered.

Jill O’Connell:

I’m Jill O’Connell, Attorney and Owner of the O’Connell Law Firm in Lewisville Texas. You can reach me at 940-497-5454.

One on Wednesday™ – Divorce in a Pandemic

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell, this is One on Wednesday™. I’m the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm in Lewisville. My number is 940-497-5454. And today I want to give you a few tips based on questions I’m getting in the office right now.

Jill O’Connell:

One is, are we still meeting with clients and are we still able to work? Yes, I am still meeting with clients by telephone, by electronic conferencing, using any of the available methods and then I’m emailing a lot. In that respect, it’s not a whole lot different than what I did before all of the coronavirus.

Jill O’Connell:

And I am still working for clients. Attorney’s are essential services and I am still working within the courts provisions and ways that they’re providing to us to get cases concluded and keep cases moving forward and if you find yourself in that position of you are considering divorce before all of this happened and you are not sure what can happen now, give me a call. I’m happy to visit with you about options available to you.

Jill O’Connell:

I’m also revamping all of my fixed fee offerings. Offering some new things to clients, some new methods of meeting as a normal course of business and some new ways to work through your case.

Jill O’Connell:

If you’ve got any questions call me, Jill O’Connell, O’Connell Law Firm in Lewisville Texas, 940-497-5454.

One on Wednesday™ – Divorcing Parents

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™. I’m the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm at our new location in Lewisville, 405 State Highway 121, Suite A250.

Jill O’Connell:

And today’s topic is going to be dealing with issues for those going through divorce who are parents. And, uh, I will also touch on some topics if you’ve already gone through divorce that may come up.

Jill O’Connell:

If you’ve got temporary orders or a final decree, the- the two areas that typically are questions I hear a lot this time of year are about spring break and, uh, notices for summer possession. And spring break, if you’ve got temporary orders, you need to review your orders and see if it’s in there. If it’s not, this might be the time to discuss that question with your attorney. And for, if you’ve got a final decree, review, start with, my favorite tip, review your decree and see what is in the orders that apply to you. And if you have a decree, you’ll find out. And, if you don’t yet have a decree, again, this is the time to either contact my office, contact your attorney and begin to think about what’s going to happen with your children for spring break.

Jill O’Connell:

The other area that people start to think about and have questions about are the notice provisions for summer possession. Both parents typically have deadlines to make certain notices. Again, my first favorite tip, review your decree, find out what’s in the orders that apply to you, and if you have questions when you’re reading through there, then contact either your attorney or you can contact my office.

Jill O’Connell:

I meet with people frequently and review decrees with them to help them understand and implement what’s in their decree into their lives and follow it so that they are doing what they need to do to get the best time, uh, with their kids.

Jill O’Connell:

These a- two areas are ones that are very easily, um, forgotten until it’s too late, and then it creates a lot of stress for both parents and kids.

Jill O’Connell:

So get ahead of the curve, review your decree, look at your spring break provisions, and deadlines and notices for your summertime with your kids. If you’ve got any questions, call our office. We’ve got two numbers, 940-497-5454 and 972-203-6644.

Jill O’Connell:

I’m Jill O’Connell, O’Connell Law Firm in Lewisville.

One on Wednesday™ – Fault and No Fault Divorce

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell, this is One on Wednesday™. I am the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm, and my practice is focused in Denton County family law and divorce cases. You can reach us at 940-497-5454 with questions, and advice specific for your case if you need it.

Jill O’Connell:

Today I’m going to briefly talk about fault and no fault divorce. No fault divorce is something we hear a lot about, and what that means is that in Texas, you do not have to allege or include grounds for divorce. You do not have to say that one party is at fault for the divorce. You do not have to give a reason. That allows, uh, your divorce attorney, allows me to include language that says, this is a breakdown of the marital relationship, and then we don’t have to say anybody engaged in any wrongdoing, any bad acts. We don’t have to burn those bridges, and make public record your private life.

Jill O’Connell:

Fault, we can also prove fault if we want to, and if we need to. And in specific cases that, that might be something we need to do. But we don’t have to do it. And when we use fault grounds, when we use, uh, di, grounds for divorce, we include certain bad acts, certain actions, certain things that one party has done that says this is grounds for a divorce.

Jill O’Connell:

So again, Texas is a no fault state, we don’t have to say that someone’s done something wrong in order for a divorce to be granted. And that is the difference between fault and no fault. If you’ve got questions about divorce, you find yourself in that spot that divorce is where you are, and is the right choice for you at this time, call the office, I’m happy to meet with you. 940-497-5454, Jill O’Connell, O’Connell Law Firm.

One on Wednesday™ – The Language of Divorce

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi. I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™. I am the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm. With my practice focusing on Denton County family law and divorce cases.

Jill O’Connell:

Today I want to discuss with you some general family law, legalese, legal terms, language of divorce, those things that are used and sometimes we as lawyers forget that normal people don’t know what they always mean. And sometimes there are abbreviations.

Jill O’Connell:

So, the first one I want to talk about are, is the term standing orders. Denton County and most counties in Texas have orders that go into effect when the first pleading in a divorce and family law case is filed, and for Denton County, you can find a link to those standing orders on our website, and you can find, ah, those standing orders on the Denton County website.

Jill O’Connell:

And there are also some common terms that are used, ah, when we s- when lawyers are talking about the parties, that is typically the, the spouses only in a divorce case, it does not mean the children. The children are not parties to the case, only the husband and wife, ah, this, the two spouses are, ah, the parties to the case. If we are using an abbreviation, IMOM, it means in the matter of the marriage of. Sometimes that abbreviation is a little bit different. ITIO, in the interest of. And that’s in, ah, family law cases, ah, when we’re talking about in the interest of minor children. Um, opposing counsel is the lawyer on the other side, ah, and if they’re, someone is representing themselves, you might see the words, pro se, P-R-O space S-E. Or pro per, P-R-O space P-E-R, and that means representing themselves. A self-representer.

Jill O’Connell:

These are few of terms that we come across and that I get questions about frequently, ah, just for information only, and if you want specific advice for your case, call the office, we’re happy to set up an appointment and consultation for you, ah, 940-497-5454. I’m Jill O’Connell, this is One on Wednesday, and um, we will see you next time.

One on Wednesday™ – Review Your Holiday Orders (Temporary Orders / Final Orders)

Video Transcript:

Hi, this is One on Wednesday™. I’m Jill O’Connell with the O’Connell Law Firm in Lake Dallas, Texas.

Today’s edition of One on Wednesday is going to be a little different. I want to check in with you guys and see if you have reviewed your orders as we move into this holiday season. I was going to say progress but that… As we move into this holiday season. We are already approaching Halloween and Thanksgiving is right around the corner and then we’ve got Christmas. So a couple of things that I want to touch base on. Review your orders, whether they’re temporary orders or your final orders, decree of divorce. When are you going to have possession of your kids and when are you not going to have possession of your kids? You probably need to make sure you know when school is out this year for Thanksgiving holidays and for Christmas holidays.

One other big pointer, big tip this time is that Halloween is on a Thursday night. Make sure that you are touching base with the other parent about Halloween. If your kids have an idea about what their Halloween is going to look like, you and the other parent need to be talking about what that’s going to look like for them. Start that conversation now. You don’t want to be having that conversation on October 30th. This is the time when conflicts unexpectedly come up. To avoid that, take a look, start managing your schedule and your kids’ needs right now.

If you’ve got questions about your case, some unexpected things have come up in this holiday season, I’m happy to talk to you about those. We do that in a consultation in our office, so I can give you some tips specific to you and legal advice specifically for you. You can reach us at (940) 497-5454.

Contact An Experienced Denton Family Law And Divorce Attorney

One on Wednesday™ – Divorce And Family Law Common Abbreviations

Video Transcript:

Hi. I’m Jill O’Connell. This is One on Wednesday™. I am the owner and attorney at O’Connell Law Firm in Lake Dallas, Texas. Thanks for joining me today.

Today my topic on One on Wednesday is just for general information. I’m going to talk to you a little bit about abbreviations that are commonly used in emails or other correspondence in divorce cases, and other types of cases, that sometimes leave people feeling like the legalese that’s being spoken, they don’t understand, and I’m going to just explain a few of them.

One of them that you might see is the abbreviation OPD. Generally in our office that stands for, “original petition for divorce.” And sometimes that is easier to use than writing that all out every time.

Another one is ITIO, all caps. And if there is a modification case that’s going on, or another kind of case that deals with strictly children after a divorce, that could mean, “in the interest of.”
The other type of one that’s similar to that could be ITMO or ITMOMO. Both of those are used in the legal field to mean, “in the matter of the marriage of [blank].”

So if you’re referencing a divorce case in our world, we talk about it the way that the court would look at it on a pleading, “in the matter of the marriage of.”

One other one is, all caps, QDRO means, “qualified domestic relations order.”

And another one you might often see, sometimes in relation to a divorce decree or child support, is, all caps, SDU, “support disbursement unit.” And that is generally used when talking about child support disbursement.

These are a few of the abbreviations that we give information to our clients about. And if you’ve got more questions about your case, divorce, or post divorce issues, call our office (940) 497-5454. We are conveniently located right smack dab in the middle of Denton County.

One on Wednesday™ – Dealing With Divorce And Custody Issues Around The Holidays

Denton Divorce And Family Law Attorney – O’Connell Law Firm, P.C.

Video Transcript:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell, this is One on Wednesday™. Thanks for joining me. Today’s tips are about strategizing and planning to have the best holiday that you can if you’re going through a divorce or family law case.

The best way to make sure that you have a good holiday is to plan. So, begin to read whatever orders you have now and if you have questions, contact your lawyer now. Don’t wait until the last minute because everybody is going to be stressed during the actual holiday, and if you get your answers now you can begin to plan.

The other thing is communicate as well as you can. There are tools to let you communicate better, and if you need some of those this is also a great time to talk to your attorney about those.

And the third thing is remember that, uh, if you have children this is a great time to have a special time with your kids. Forget about the divorce, forget about the issues that are going on with the other person, with your soon-to-be ex spouse, and don’t focus on whatever problems there might be there. Focus on the holidays, make some new traditions, enjoy your time with family and friends and enjoy the holidays, uh, on your own in this new normal for you.

One on Wednesday™ – What is Going to Happen To Your House During & After The Divorce

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell with the O’Connell Law Firm, bringing you One on Wednesday™ today, and we can be reached at 940-497-5454. We’re going to give you some general divorce information today. One of the questions I get asked frequently is, “What’s going to happen to my house?” The very short answer is I don’t know, but here’s some things to look at to help you and your lawyer get a streamlined plan for what you want to do with your house.

Jill O’Connell:

Look at when the house was purchased, what the purchase price was, who is on the purchasing documents and the financing documents? How much is it valued now and what is your budget now? What is your budget post-divorce? And ultimately, look at some longterm goals. Where do you want to live? What type of place do you want to live in? And use all of that information, work with your divorce attorney to come up with a plan to determine what will happen with you and your house.

Jill O’Connell:

Again, general information for you, if you’d like more advice about what is going to happen to your house in your divorce, call our office. I’m happy to meet with you. 940-497-5454. Thanks so much.

One on Wednesday™ – Time And Deadlines In Divorce

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, thanks for joining us today. I’m Jill O’Connell with the O’Connell Law Firm. We are going to be talking about one issue today on Wednesday at one o’clock, and this is our One on Wednesday™ video. Today what I’m going to talk about is a couple of questions about time deadlines that I’ve gotten recently. The first one is, what about the 60 days? Does that mean that once I file for divorce, I’m automatically divorced in 60 days? The answer to that is a quick no. The 60 days is actually a waiting period. And it means the very quickest, the very soonest, if everything came together perfectly, you could be divorced on day 61 after you filed your original petition for divorce. But you are not automatically divorced in 60 days. For more information about that, and if you have questions about that, call the office. I’m happy to meet with you and consult specifically about your case and give you some specific advice.

Jill O’Connell:

Our number is (940) 497-5454. And the second quick question is, what about the 30 days after I’m divorced when you tell me I can’t get remarried? You can’t get remarried within the 30 days after your divorce is final. You’ve got to wait more than 30 days to get remarried. So if you are dying to be remarried after your divorce is finaled, also come see me. We can see what we can do. I’m happy to discuss that issue with you. Call to make an appointment for your questions, to get specific legal advice on your case at (940) 497-5454. Happy Wednesday.

One on Wednesday™ – Agreed Divorce & Uncontested Divorce

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell. This is my video show. Thanks for joining me. This is One on Wednesday. We are starting off 2020 strong, and we are going to start with the topic that is very basic. What is the difference between an agreed divorce and an uncontested divorce? An agreed divorce is a divorce wherein you and your soon to be ex-spouse are both in agreement on the fact that divorce is right for both of you at this time, and then all of the terms of the divorce as well. So everything that has to do with your estate, property, assets, debts, liabilities as well as all of the provisions regarding your children. And that includes child support, child possession schedule, conservatorship, the rights and duties. So an agreed divorce is exactly what it sounds says, but it includes much more than most people think about. It’s being in agreement on everything in the divorce as well.

Jill O’Connell:

An uncontested divorce is one where both parties are in agreement that divorce is right for them at this time. However, it also can leave open the possibility that there are issues that you are not yet in agreement with your soon to be ex-spouse on. Whether that’s provisions regarding the children, child support, possession schedules, conservatorship, rights and duties for the children. Or does it have to do with your marital estate, your property, your assets, your debts, your liabilities? All of those can fall into the area that you do not yet have an agreement on.

Jill O’Connell:

So to sum up, you can have an agreed divorce or you can have an uncontested divorce, but they very often do not mean the same thing. If you’ve got questions about an agreed divorce or an uncontested divorce or even anything having to do with the fact that you find yourself in this position and that divorce is something that you need to get more information about. Please call the office. I’m happy to visit with you. (940) 497-5454. I’m Jill O’Connell. The O’Connell Law Firm. This is One on Wednesday.

One on Wednesday™ – Starting A Divorce in North Texas (Denton)

Denton Divorce And Family Law Attorney – O’Connell Law Firm, P.C.

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell:

Hi, I’m Jill O’Connell with the O’Connell Law Firm. It is One on Wednesday™, and I am bringing you one topic, general information, for about one minute today. What I want to talk to you about is how a divorce gets started. Very often the question is how do we start all of the process once I’ve got somebody that I’m visiting with in the office? The way that a divorce gets started in the state of Texas is the filing of an Original Petition for Divorce. In Denton County that Original Petition for Divorce is going to also include, or have attached, the Denton County Standing Orders. The Standing Orders apply from the beginning of the case until the conclusion, unless there are orders entered that say something different. If you’ve got more questions about how a divorce gets started, about the Denton County Standing Orders, and/or about your situation, your case, I’m happy to visit with you and give you some more specific advice. This is just general information today. You can reach us at (940) 497-5454, and I am happy to visit with you in a consultation. Thanks so much.

One on Wednesday™ – Back To School Tips (Dealing With Divorce and Custody)

Video Transcript:

Jill O’Connell: Hi, Jill O’Connell with the O’Connell Law Firm and our One on Wednesday™ for you. Today I’m going to talk to you a little bit about back to school tips. If you’ve got kids and have a standard possession in a Texas divorce these are some things that are specific to you, although they’re tips, general tips for everybody and not specific to anybody’s case. If you’ve got a question about your case, call us and we’ll get you in so we can visit with you about that. (940) 497-5454.

Jill O’Connell: Here’s the information I’d like to give you. One is, as the summer’s winding down, go ahead, get ahead of the game and get onboard to the website and check out your school’s calendar. What’s the first day of school? How does that affect your possession? When does the child have to be exchanged from current parent to another parent? How is all that going to play out in the next four weeks?

Jill O’Connell: The other thing to remember is Thursday nights come back into play when school starts. Then we need to start looking at fall holidays. Do you have any special provisions for Halloween? What’s going to happen on Halloween? What day of the week is Halloween? Is that going to affect your possession? Then look at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Start to plan ahead because those things, as we all know as parents, are going to hit you really fast after school starts.

Jill O’Connell: Again, some general tips, information only. If you’ve got questions, I’m happy to visit with you more about your specifics in your case. Call us today. (940)497-5454. Thanks.