Problems filing in the wrong court

Problems filing in the wrong court

What happens if you miss-file your claims

When a case or claim is filed in the wrong court, you may lose your claim without being heard. If your case is dismissed after the statute of limitations has run, you are out of luck no matter how good your claim was.

Necessary Disclaimer: Do not take, or refrain from taking, any action based on what you read. You need to discuss your situation with an attorney who can advise you based on your facts.

If you have a question about a pending or anticipated lawsuit about contesting a will in Texas, use the Contact Us page at the top of the site to see if we can help.

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Filing in the wrong court

In a 2020 case, a man died and his family filed his probate case in the probate court. His wife ( a divorce was pending but was not final so she was still his wife) filed an opposition and also filed a tort suit against the other family members in the probate court asserting claims of business disparagement and intentional infliction of emotional distress. (“the tort case”). The other family members filed a motion to dismiss under the Texas Anti-SLAPP law. The probate judge granted the motion to dismiss the tort suit and ordered the wife to pay attorney’s fees to the other family members. The wife appealed. 4-19-00500-CV.

No jurisdiction

In the appeal, the appeals court ruled that the probate court did not have jurisdiction over the tort suit. Because this decision came more than two years after the claims accrued, it was too late for the wife to refile them in a court that did have jurisdiction. 

The moral of this case?

If you file in the wrong court you may never get your case decided on the merits.

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Who and What we Are

Robert Ray is Board Certified

Robert Ray is the Editor and owner of this site. Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization. We handle cases throughout Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

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We take your privacy very seriously. We are keenly aware of the trust you place in us and our responsibility to protect your privacy. We treat all information provided to us with care and discretion.

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Deathbed Marriages in Texas

Deathbed Marriages in Texas

What are deathbed marriages in Texas

Deathbed or predatory marriages are when someone such as a friend, a caregiver or other person, by hook or by crook, marries the elderly person. I have written about those situations on my blog. The marriage is not based on the love and affection two people have for each other but is based on greed. The person is trying to loot the estate of the elderly person.

What can be done about deathebed marriages in Texas

Sometimes the family is not aware

that the caregiver has married their elderly relative until the relative dies. Texas has a statute that deals with these situations. TEC §123.102. However, the family must act quickly. If a procedding to annul the marriage must be commenced within one year after death. Additionally, the marriage must be less than three years old at time of death.

Your Privacy

We take your privacy very seriously. We are keenly aware of the trust you place in us and our responsibility to protect your privacy. We treat all information provided to us with care and discretion.

Robert Ray is Board Certified

Robert Ray is the Editor and owner of this site. Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

We handle cases throughout Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

Robert Ray Texas Inheritance

Click here to email us or to go to the contact form if you want to contact us about a Texas inheritance dispute.

Can Spouses Inherit – Including Common Law

Can Spouses Inherit – Including Common Law

What does a Texas spouse inherit?

If there is a will, the will determines what property a spouse inherits. If there is no will, what a spouse inherits is determined by the type of property in the estate and what other heirs of the deceased exist. A review of the property in an estate and how much of it a spouse is entitled to can be found here.

There are two types of marriages that are recognized by Texas law:

  1. Ceremonial marriage – where the spouses obtain a marriage license and are married by someone authorized by law to perform marriages; and
  2. Common law marriages – where no marriage license is obtained and a ceremonial marriage may or may not be performed.

The law treats the spouse of a common law marriage the same as the spouse of a ceremonial marriage. Both are heirs of their spouse and would take under the laws of descent and distribution. Of course, the common law spouse must prove that they meet all of the legal requirements to be considered a common law spouse before they would be entitled to inherit.

For more information Start Here to Read About Inheritance.

Your Privacy

We take your privacy very seriously. We are keenly aware of the trust you place in us and our responsibility to protect your privacy. We treat all information provided to us with care and discretion.

Robert Ray is Board Certified

Robert Ray is the Editor and owner of this site. Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

We handle cases throughout Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

Robert Ray Texas Inheritance

Click here to email us or to go to the contact form if you want to contact us about a Texas inheritance dispute.

When a will is not a will but is a community property survivorship agreement

A community property survivorship agreement is similar to a will but it does not have to be executed with the formalities required of a will. The agreement has to be signed by both parties and has to use certain words as described by the statute.
The effect of the agreement is to transfer all of the community property owned by husband and wife to the survivor when one dies. That sounds like a will doesn’t it? However, it is not a will but is just an agreement. Since it is an agreement and not a will, the requirements of execution under a will did not apply to an agreement. The agreement doesn’t transfer separate property, just community property. 112.001.

I have an article on my blog about a 2019 case involving community property survivorship agreements. You can view that here.

Your Privacy

We take your privacy very seriously. We are keenly aware of the trust you place in us and our responsibility to protect your privacy. We treat all information provided to us with care and discretion.

Robert Ray is Board Certified

Robert Ray is the Editor and owner of this site. Board Certified, Personal Injury Trial Law — Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

We handle cases throughout Texas. Our principal office is in Lantana, Texas (DFW area).

Robert Ray Texas Inheritance

Click here to email us or to go to the contact form if you want to contact us about a Texas inheritance dispute.

Contesting a will in Texas

Zoom type workshops?

In the age of Covid-19. we have been thinking of having monthly or bi-monthly, free, Zoom type workshops where participants discuss with us issues that are of interest to them. There would be no agenda, we would discuss areas that the participants wanted to discuss. Participants could attend by computer, tablet or smartphone.

This would be a public Zoom type meeting so nothing personal or confidential should be discussed. Just general questions. Personal or confidential questions should be asked by using the Contact Us tab above.

If you think we should start having these workshops, please leave your email so we can notify you?

We will notify you if we decide there is interest in the workshops. Thanks for letting us know.

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