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Austin Family Law And Personal Injury Blog

Street racing often leads to tragic car accidents

Most drivers are responsible people who closely adhere to the rules of the road, avoid drugs and alcohol before driving, wear seat belts, etc. Unfortunately, however, not every person who gets behind the wheel behaves this way, and car accidents can happen when drivers choose to act recklessly, essentially turning their vehicle into a dangerous weapon. Such was the case when a pair of street racers killed a Texas man when one of their cars collided with his vehicle.

The horrific crash happened early on a recent Sunday morning in Pleasant Grove. Police have said a 45-year-old man was on his way to donate plasma the day after celebrating his birthday. While he was crossing an intersection, his car was struck by one of the racing vehicles. The vehicle that was hit then spun out of control, ejecting the driver and throwing him across three lanes of traffic. He was pronounced dead at the accident scene.

Head-on car accidents often result in fatalities

Head-on collisions can happen for various reasons and are sometimes a result of circumstances out of the driver's control, such as a medical condition or mechanical failure. Other times, drivers who cause these types of car accidents were under the influence of drugs or alcohol at the time, or something inside the vehicle, such as a cell phone, caused a momentary distraction. Whatever the reason, wrong-way drivers often cause fatalities, and such was the case recently when two people died in a horrific collision on a Texas roadway.

The incident happened in Arlington on a Thursday evening. Police have said, according to witnesses and video surveillance, a vehicle was traveling southbound in a northbound lane. The car struck a northbound SUV, causing a chain reaction involving two other vehicles.

Guiding you toward a successful divorce resolution

Much like there are many emotions at the start of a marriage, there are a wide range of emotions to navigate throughout the end of a marriage. While no one gets married with the intention to get divorced, the unfortunate reality is that the divorce rate still remains around 50 percent. Thus, those intending to get married and those currently married need to consider the possibility of divorce in their future. With this consideration, many partners will take the steps to develop a prenuptial agreement. While this document can be very beneficial in the event of the divorce, it is important to understand that this marital agreement does not address all divorce issues.

While a prenuptial or postnuptial agreement could help address some major divorce issues, the legal team at The Law Offices of Mark C. Roles, P.C., understand that these marital documents do not address all divorce issues. Additionally, divorcing couples in Texas may have reason to challenge these documents, giving rise to many additional decisions that require attention.

Common financial mistakes to avoid in the divorce process

Though divorce is a common event in our modern world, many people worry about facing stigma as a divorced person. They feel as though they failed at their marriage. In reality, there are many reasons that people divorce, and it can happen to anyone.

However, because of their fear of judgment, people here in Texas may struggle to talk about their divorce. This self-isolation can lead people to make poor choices about their future, especially in regard to finances. If you think this applies to you, experts have several tips to help you make decisions for your finances.

For a number of reasons, January is aptly called "Divorce Month"

Many people, including those who work in the world of family law, say that there is a lot of truth to January being "Divorce Month," that is, the time during which it seems many people in the Austin area choose to pursue, or get involved in, a divorce.

Indeed, there is some empirical data which backs up January's status as a Divorce Month. For one, new divorce filings are about 30 percent higher than what one would expect in a typical month. Moreover, based on data from Google, more people tend to search for information about divorce in the early part of January, although some of this could be due to high-profile divorce cases hitting the news cycle during this time.

Local intersection ranks among the least safe in the country

An intersection in Austin recently received notoriety after a not-for-profit group dubbed it the sixth most dangerous intersection in the country. According to the report, the interchange of Interstate 35 and William Cannon Drive experienced 25 separate car accidents between 2016 and 2018. In all, there were 80 accident victims at this intersection, although the report did not discuss either the causes of the accidents or how extensive the injuries were. Major intersections in other Texas cities also did not fare well on the report. For instance, Interstate 75 at Interstate 635 in Houston experienced 24 accidents with a total of 76 victims.

The William Cannon Drive intersection might be a good spot to avoid during the holiday rush. However, chances are that at some point those who live in and around Austin are going to have to travel through this important intersection. When they do so, it would be a good idea to pass through this area slowly and attentively. After all, part of the problem with the intersection may be that traffic backs up unexpectedly or people change lanes with little to no warning.

Overview of child custody mediation

Many people in the Austin area probably understand that when parents who are living in separate homes are able to cooperate with each other and maintain a cordial relationship, at least when it comes to raising the children they have in common, it is better for all involved. However, it can be hard to know exactly how to do that, especially when tensions are running high between a couple.

One approach, as a previous post discussed, is for a Travis County judge to appoint an official called a "guardian ad litem." While having an expert conduct an investigation is helpful, the drawback is that, ultimately, the judge still needs to make a decision about conservatorship and parenting time, which could leave one side disappointed.

What is a "guardian ad litem"?

In Travis County, a "guardian ad litem" is a court-appointed official who is supposed to represent the best interests of the child in a family law proceeding. While guardians ad litem are only automatically appointed in certain adoption and in parental termination cases, they may be appointed in other child custody proceedings as well. A Texas judge is more likely to appoint a guardian ad litem when the conservatorship of a child is contested between the two parents.

Likewise, either parent may request the appointment of a guardian ad litem. The guardian ad litem will usually have an advanced degree in social work or some other field. While the court has full-time guardians ad litem on staff, there are also guardians ad litem available in private practice as well, which the Travis County courts are willing to appoint.

Car accidents: Texas has fatal crash everyday for over 19 years

A car crash can change a family's life in an instant. Not every accident proves fatal, but those that do happen much too frequently. It is such a common occurrence in some places that officials are taking notice.

In Texas, at least one fatal crash has happened every single day since November 8th, 2000. TxDOT and other lawmakers want to see that change. They launched an awareness campaign in the hopes that they can reduce the number of fatal car accidents.

Police seeking driver after hit-and-run fatality

A previous post here discussed how the number of pedestrian fatalities continues to rise across the country, even in the face of a traffic fatality rate that is declining on the whole. It was a sad coincidence that, shortly after that post, a pedestrian from out of state lost his life after attending a popular automobile racing event in the Austin area.

According to reports, the man was struck by a pickup truck during the evening of a Formula 1 United States Grand Prix event, an event which is attended by over 250,000 people. The driver of the pickup fled the scene after striking the pedestrian, and police have provided a description of the vehicle to the public.

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