Category Archives: Texas

Texas

Which Court Do I Go To?

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Let’s say you need to file for divorce, or want to sue someone in small claims court, or need to probate an estate – when you try to get started, you quickly realize that there are several or even dozens of different courts in your county! Which court should you go to?

In most states, each county has a variety of different types of courts to handle different types of cases. These courts may all be located in one Courthouse, or they may be located in different buildings across the county. In other states, such as California, there is … Read More

Do You Need a Lawyer?

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Since most people go through most of their lives without interacting with the court system, it can be confusing when one is suddenly forced to interact with that system. Imagine that tomorrow you discover you have a legal problem. “Do I need a lawyer?” may well be your first reaction. The easy answer for any legal problem is yes, you should talk to a lawyer, even if the lawyer then says you don’t really need a lawyer. But you don’t know any lawyers – this being your first encounter with a legal problem – and lawyers cost money. Maybe you … Read More

What to Know Before Searching Court Records Online

What can you expect to find when using the Search Court Case Records links on CourtReference? That varies greatly from state to state, and even county to county. Some states have statewide court record search systems for state courts. In other states, it is up to individual counties to provide online access to their court records. Of these, some counties provide free online access, while other counties contract with a private company that charges a fee to the user for some records searches.

Most court record searches can be done by party name, case number, date of birth and/or … Read More

Electronic Filing for the Masses

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It’s getting easier to conduct court business online. Court systems haven’t been as quick to set up online transactions as, say, banks or booksellers. Yet it’s not new; see our 2009 blog posts What is E-Filing and Paying Court Fines Online. And it’s getting better.

Take electronic filing of court documents: More and more court systems are adding this capability. New Jersey even has mandatory electronic filing for some types of cases. But court-run electronic filing is not expanding fast enough to satisfy the demand from law firms looking efficiency. In response, a number of private companies now offer … Read More

What is E-Filing?

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If you are involved in a lawsuit, you (or your attorney) will likely need to file many documents with the court. This can include an initial summons and complaint as well as various motions and notices requesting actions from the court or opposing party. All these filed documents can add up to piles and piles of paper. Furthermore, whenever a paper is filed with a court, this requires the filer to go down to the courthouse in person to present the document to the clerk of court. Although this is a tradition that is mostly accepted as a part of … Read More

The Role of Community Property in Divorce

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According to many sources, the divorce rate in America is approximately 50%. It is a staggering number, especially when you consider that many of these cases, there is often a correlated draining legal component. While the length of a divorce proceeding will vary from case to case and state-to-state, one constant nagging portion of the divorce procedure is the splitting of property. One of the most controversial property division laws occurs in community property states. States that follow these laws include Arizona, California, Idaho, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.

Two important words to understand in the division … Read More

Texas DPS implements criminal record expunction procedures

  The Texas Department of Public Safety provides criminal conviction data files to businesses who resell access to the data.  In many cases, the businesses purchase similar data from a large number of states in order to provide search capability that covers as many jurisdictions as possible.  The benefits to the end user are dramatic.

One challenge facing the criminal records industry is in it’s ability to deal with records that have been expunged or sealed since the data was obtained by the reseller.  Most of the big players update the data as often as the record holders will allow and … Read More