Sections
Chapter 151 Rights and Duties in Parent-Child Relationship 151.001 – 151.003
Chapter 152 Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act 152.001 – 152.317
Chapter 153 Conservatorship, Possession, and Access 153.001 – 153.709
Chapter 154 Child Support 154.001 – 154.309
Chapter 155 Continuing, Exclusive Jurisdiction; Transfer 155.001 – 155.301
Chapter 156 Modification 156.001 – 156.409
Chapter 157 Enforcement 157.001 – 157.508
Chapter 158 Withholding From Earnings for Child Support 158.001 – 158.507
Chapter 159 Uniform Interstate Family Support Act 159.001 – 159.901
Chapter 160 Uniform Parentage Act 160.001 – 160.763
Chapter 161 Termination of the Parent-Child Relationship 161.001 – 161.304
Chapter 162 Adoption 162.001 – 162.702

Terms Used In Texas Family Code > Title 5 > Subtitle B - Suits Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship

  • Abstract of judgment: In a federal criminal proceeding, A certification from a U.S. District Court clerk that a judgment of restitution was entered against the defendant owing to the victim. If the defendant inherits, owns, or sells real property or holdings, these assets can then be attached at the state and local levels as well.
  • Adjourn: A motion to adjourn a legislative chamber or a committee, if passed, ends that day's session.
  • Advice and consent: Under the Constitution, presidential nominations for executive and judicial posts take effect only when confirmed by the Senate, and international treaties become effective only when the Senate approves them by a two-thirds vote.
  • Affirmed: In the practice of the appellate courts, the decree or order is declared valid and will stand as rendered in the lower court.
  • Alcoholic beverage: means alcohol, or any beverage containing more than one-half of one percent of alcohol by volume, which is capable of use for beverage purposes, either alone or when diluted. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Allegation: something that someone says happened.
  • Alternating brewery proprietorship: means an arrangement in which two or more parties take turns using the physical premises of a brewery as permitted under this code and federal law. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Annual percentage rate: The cost of credit at a yearly rate. It is calculated in a standard way, taking the average compound interest rate over the term of the loan so borrowers can compare loans. Lenders are required by law to disclose a card account's APR. Source: FDIC
  • Annuity: A periodic (usually annual) payment of a fixed sum of money for either the life of the recipient or for a fixed number of years. A series of payments under a contract from an insurance company, a trust company, or an individual. Annuity payments are made at regular intervals over a period of more than one full year.
  • Answer: The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for defense.
  • Appellate: About appeals; an appellate court has the power to review the judgement of another lower court or tribunal.
  • Applicant: means a person who submits or files an original or renewal application with the commission for a license or permit. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Appraisal: A determination of property value.
  • Attachment: A procedure by which a person's property is seized to pay judgments levied by the court.
  • Attorney-in-fact: A person who, acting as an agent, is given written authorization by another person to transact business for him (her) out of court.
  • Bailiff: a court officer who enforces the rules of behavior in courtrooms.
  • Bankruptcy: Refers to statutes and judicial proceedings involving persons or businesses that cannot pay their debts and seek the assistance of the court in getting a fresh start. Under the protection of the bankruptcy court, debtors may discharge their debts, perhaps by paying a portion of each debt. Bankruptcy judges preside over these proceedings.
  • Baseline: Projection of the receipts, outlays, and other budget amounts that would ensue in the future without any change in existing policy. Baseline projections are used to gauge the extent to which proposed legislation, if enacted into law, would alter current spending and revenue levels.
  • Bequest: Property gifted by will.
  • Brewer: means a person engaged in the brewing of malt beverages, whether located inside or outside the state. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Capital offense: A crime punishable by death.
  • Chambers: A judge's office.
  • Charge to the jury: The judge's instructions to the jury concerning the law that applies to the facts of the case on trial.
  • Charity: An agency, institution, or organization in existence and operating for the benefit of an indefinite number of persons and conducted for educational, religious, scientific, medical, or other beneficent purposes.
  • Child: includes an adopted child, regardless of whether the adoption occurred through:
    (1) an existing or former statutory procedure; or
    (2) an equitable adoption or acts of estoppel. See Texas Estates Code 22.004
  • Clerk of court: An officer appointed by the court to work with the chief judge in overseeing the court's administration, especially to assist in managing the flow of cases through the court and to maintain court records.
  • Commission: means the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Common law: The legal system that originated in England and is now in use in the United States. It is based on judicial decisions rather than legislative action.
  • Community Reinvestment Act: The Act is intended to encourage depository institutions to help meet the credit needs of the communities in which they operate, including low- and moderate-income neighborhoods. It was enacted by the Congress in 1977. Source: OCC
  • Comptroller: means the state comptroller of public accounts. See Texas Government Code 312.011
  • Continuance: Putting off of a hearing ot trial until a later time.
  • Conviction: A judgement of guilt against a criminal defendant.
  • Counterclaim: A claim that a defendant makes against a plaintiff.
  • Court: means and includes:
    (1) a county court in the exercise of its probate jurisdiction;
    (2) a court created by statute and authorized to exercise original probate jurisdiction; and
    (3) a district court exercising original probate jurisdiction in a contested matter. See Texas Estates Code 22.007
  • Court reporter: A person who makes a word-for-word record of what is said in court and produces a transcript of the proceedings upon request.
  • Credit bureau: An agency that collects individual credit information and sells it for a fee to creditors so they can make a decision on granting loans. Typical clients include banks, mortgage lenders, credit card companies, and other financing companies. (Also commonly referred to as consumer-reporting agency or credit-reporting agency.) Source: OCC
  • Credit report: A detailed report of an individual's credit history prepared by a credit bureau and used by a lender in determining a loan applicant's creditworthiness. Source: OCC
  • Credit Score: A number, roughly between 300 and 800, that measures an individual's credit worthiness. The most well-known type of credit score is the FICO score. This score represents the answer from a mathematical formula that assigns numerical values to various pieces of information in your credit report. Source: OCC
  • Criminal negligence: has the meaning assigned by Section Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Decedent: A deceased person.
  • Defense attorney: Represent defendants in criminal matters.
  • Deposition: An oral statement made before an officer authorized by law to administer oaths. Such statements are often taken to examine potential witnesses, to obtain discovery, or to be used later in trial.
  • Devise: To gift property by will.
  • Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
  • Dismissal: The dropping of a case by the judge without further consideration or hearing. Source:
  • Distilled spirits: means alcohol, spirits of wine, whiskey, rum, brandy, gin, or any liquor produced in whole or in part by the process of distillation, including all dilutions or mixtures of them, and includes spirit coolers that may have an alcoholic content as low as four percent alcohol by volume and that contain plain, sparkling, or carbonated water and may also contain one or more natural or artificial blending or flavoring ingredients. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Docket: A log containing brief entries of court proceedings.
  • Effects: includes all personal property and all interest in that property. See Texas Government Code 312.011
  • Electronic funds transfer: The transfer of money between accounts by consumer electronic systems-such as automated teller machines (ATMs) and electronic payment of bills-rather than by check or cash. (Wire transfers, checks, drafts, and paper instruments do not fall into this category.) Source: OCC
  • Embezzlement: In most states, embezzlement is defined as theft/larceny of assets (money or property) by a person in a position of trust or responsibility over those assets. Embezzlement typically occurs in the employment and corporate settings. Source: OCC
  • employee: as used in this title shall be held to include all officers, agents or employees, actually employed and engaged in the service of such corporation, company, association of persons, including its officers, bona fide ticket and freight agents, physicians, surgeons and general attorneys, and attorneys who appear in court to try cases and receive a reasonable annual salary therefor. See Texas Vernon's Civil Statutes 4007
  • Entitlement: A Federal program or provision of law that requires payments to any person or unit of government that meets the eligibility criteria established by law. Entitlements constitute a binding obligation on the part of the Federal Government, and eligible recipients have legal recourse if the obligation is not fulfilled. Social Security and veterans' compensation and pensions are examples of entitlement programs.
  • Escheat: Reversion of real or personal property to the state when 1) a person dies without leaving a will and has no heirs, or 2) when the property (such as a bank account) has been inactive for a certain period of time. Source: OCC
  • Estate: means a decedent's property, as that property:
    (1) exists originally and as the property changes in form by sale, reinvestment, or otherwise;
    (2) is augmented by any accretions and other additions to the property, including any property to be distributed to the decedent's representative by the trustee of a trust that terminates on the decedent's death, and substitutions for the property; and
    (3) is diminished by any decreases in or distributions from the property. See Texas Estates Code 22.012
  • Ex officio: Literally, by virtue of one's office.
  • Executor: A male person named in a will to carry out the decedent
  • Fair Credit Reporting Act: A federal law, established in 1971 and revised in 1997, that gives consumers the right to see their credit records and correct any mistakes. Source: OCC
  • Fair Debt Collection Practices Act: The Fair Debt Collection Practices Act is a set of United States statutes added as Title VIII of the Consumer Credit Protection Act. Its purpose is to ensure ethical practices in the collection of consumer debts and to provide consumers with an avenue for disputing and obtaining validation of debt information in order to ensure the information's accuracy. It is often used in conjunction with the Fair Credit Reporting Act. Source: OCC
  • family: as used in this title shall include the wife, minor children and dependents of any such employé or person. See Texas Vernon's Civil Statutes 4007
  • Federal public defender: An attorney employed by the federal courts on a full-time basis to provide legal defense to defendants who are unable to afford counsel. The judiciary administers the federal defender program pursuant to the Criminal Justice Act. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Federal Reserve System: The central bank of the United States. The Fed, as it is commonly called, regulates the U.S. monetary and financial system. The Federal Reserve System is composed of a central governmental agency in Washington, D.C. (the Board of Governors) and twelve regional Federal Reserve Banks in major cities throughout the United States. Source: OCC
  • Finance charge: The total cost of credit a customer must pay on a consumer loan, including interest. The Truth in Lending Act requires disclosure of the finance charge. Source: OCC
  • Forbearance: A means of handling a delinquent loan. A
  • Forgery: The fraudulent signing or alteration of another's name to an instrument such as a deed, mortgage, or check. The intent of the forgery is to deceive or defraud. Source: OCC
  • Garnishment: Generally, garnishment is a court proceeding in which a creditor asks a court to order a third party who owes money to the debtor or otherwise holds assets belonging to the debtor to turn over to the creditor any of the debtor
  • Grand jury: agreement providing that a lender will delay exercising its rights (in the case of a mortgage,
  • Guarantor: A party who agrees to be responsible for the payment of another party's debts should that party default. Source: OCC
  • Guardian: A person legally empowered and charged with the duty of taking care of and managing the property of another person who because of age, intellect, or health, is incapable of managing his (her) own affairs.
  • Hearsay: Statements by a witness who did not see or hear the incident in question but heard about it from someone else. Hearsay is usually not admissible as evidence in court.
  • Hotel: means the premises of an establishment:
    (A) where, in consideration of payment, travelers are furnished food and lodging;
    (B) in which are located:
    (i) at least 10 adequately furnished completely separate rooms with adequate facilities so comfortably disposed that persons usually apply for and receive overnight accommodations in the establishment, either in the course of usual and regular travel or as a residence; or
    (ii) at least five rooms described by Subparagraph (i) if the building being used as a hotel is a historic structure as defined by Section Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Impeachment: (1) The process of calling something into question, as in "impeaching the testimony of a witness." (2) The constitutional process whereby the House of Representatives may "impeach" (accuse of misconduct) high officers of the federal government for trial in the Senate.
  • Indemnification: In general, a collateral contract or assurance under which one person agrees to secure another person against either anticipated financial losses or potential adverse legal consequences. Source: FDIC
  • Intangible property: Property that has no intrinsic value, but is merely the evidence of value such as stock certificates, bonds, and promissory notes.
  • Interest rate: The amount paid by a borrower to a lender in exchange for the use of the lender's money for a certain period of time. Interest is paid on loans or on debt instruments, such as notes or bonds, either at regular intervals or as part of a lump sum payment when the issue matures. Source: OCC
  • Interrogatories: Written questions asked by one party of an opposing party, who must answer them in writing under oath; a discovery device in a lawsuit.
  • Joint resolution: A legislative measure which requires the approval of both chambers.
  • Judge: means the presiding judge of any court having original jurisdiction over probate proceedings, regardless of whether the court is:
    (1) a county court in the exercise of its probate jurisdiction;
    (2) a court created by statute and authorized to exercise probate jurisdiction; or
    (3) a district court exercising probate jurisdiction in a contested matter. See Texas Estates Code 22.019
  • Juror: A person who is on the jury.
  • Land commissioner: means the Commissioner of the General Land Office. See Texas Government Code 312.011
  • Lawsuit: A legal action started by a plaintiff against a defendant based on a complaint that the defendant failed to perform a legal duty, resulting in harm to the plaintiff.
  • Legatee: A beneficiary of a decedent
  • Liabilities: The aggregate of all debts and other legal obligations of a particular person or legal entity.
  • Licensee: means a person who is the holder of a license provided in this code, or any agent, servant, or employee of that person. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Litigation: A case, controversy, or lawsuit. Participants (plaintiffs and defendants) in lawsuits are called litigants.
  • Malt beverage: means a fermented beverage of any name or description containing one-half of one percent or more of alcohol by volume, brewed or produced from malt, in whole or in part, or from any malt substitute. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • minister of religion: shall be construed to mean only those whose principal occupation is that of a minister of religion, priest or rabbi. See Texas Vernon's Civil Statutes 4007
  • Minor: means a person younger than 18 years of age who:
    (1) has never been married; and
    (2) has not had the disabilities of minority removed for general purposes. See Texas Estates Code 22.022
  • Mistrial: An invalid trial, caused by fundamental error. When a mistrial is declared, the trial must start again from the selection of the jury.
  • Mortgagee: The person to whom property is mortgaged and who has loaned the money.
  • National Bank: A bank that is subject to the supervision of the Comptroller of the Currency. The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency is a bureau of the U.S. Treasury Department. A national bank can be recognized because it must have "national" or "national association" in its name. Source: OCC
  • Oath: includes affirmation. See Texas Government Code 311.005
  • Oath: A promise to tell the truth.
  • Open-end credit: A credit agreement (typically a credit card) that allows a customer to borrow against a preapproved credit line when purchasing goods and services. The borrower is only billed for the amount that is actually borrowed plus any interest due. (Also called a charge account or revolving credit.) Source: OCC
  • Oral argument: An opportunity for lawyers to summarize their position before the court and also to answer the judges' questions.
  • Oversight: Committee review of the activities of a Federal agency or program.
  • Permittee: means a person who is the holder of a permit provided for in this code, or an agent, servant, or employee of that person. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Person: includes a natural person and a corporation. See Texas Estates Code 22.027
  • Person: means a natural person or association of natural persons, trustee, receiver, partnership, corporation, organization, or the manager, agent, servant, or employee of any of them. See Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Personal property: All property that is not real property.
  • personal representative: include :
    (1) an executor and independent executor;
    (2) an administrator, independent administrator, and temporary administrator; and
    (3) a successor to an executor or administrator listed in Subdivision (1) or (2). See Texas Estates Code 22.031
  • Petit jury: A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons.
  • Plaintiff: The person who files the complaint in a civil lawsuit.
  • Pleadings: Written statements of the parties in a civil case of their positions. In the federal courts, the principal pleadings are the complaint and the answer.
  • Power of attorney: A written instrument which authorizes one person to act as another's agent or attorney. The power of attorney may be for a definite, specific act, or it may be general in nature. The terms of the written power of attorney may specify when it will expire. If not, the power of attorney usually expires when the person granting it dies. Source: OCC
  • Precedent: A court decision in an earlier case with facts and law similar to a dispute currently before a court. Precedent will ordinarily govern the decision of a later similar case, unless a party can show that it was wrongly decided or that it differed in some significant way.
  • Premises: has the meaning given it in Section Texas Alcoholic Beverage Code 1.04
  • Presentence report: A report prepared by a court's probation officer, after a person has been convicted of an offense, summarizing for the court the background information needed to determine the appropriate sentence. Source: U.S. Courts
  • Pro se: A Latin term meaning "on one's own behalf"; in courts, it refers to persons who present their own cases without lawyers.
  • Probation: A sentencing alternative to imprisonment in which the court releases convicted defendants under supervision as long as certain conditions are observed.
  • Prosecute: To charge someone with a crime. A prosecutor tries a criminal case on behalf of the government.
  • Public defender: Represent defendants who can't afford an attorney in criminal matters.
  • Real property: includes estates and interests in land, whether corporeal or incorporeal or legal or equitable. See Texas Estates Code 22.030
  • Real property: Land, and all immovable fixtures erected on, growing on, or affixed to the land.
  • Recess: A temporary interruption of the legislative business.
  • Recourse: An arrangement in which a bank retains, in form or in substance, any credit risk directly or indirectly associated with an asset it has sold (in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles) that exceeds a pro rata share of the bank's claim on the asset. If a bank has no claim on an asset it has sold, then the retention of any credit risk is recourse. Source: FDIC
  • Remainder: An interest in property that takes effect in the future at a specified time or after the occurrence of some event, such as the death of a life tenant.
  • Remand: When an appellate court sends a case back to a lower court for further proceedings.
  • Reporter: Makes a record of court proceedings and prepares a transcript, and also publishes the court's opinions or decisions (in the courts of appeals).
  • return: as used in this Chapter , means the report made by the officer or person charged with serving the writ of habeas corpus, and also the answer made by the person served with such writ. See Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 11.55
  • Sequester: To separate. Sometimes juries are sequestered from outside influences during their deliberations.
  • Service of process: The service of writs or summonses to the appropriate party.
  • Settlement: Parties to a lawsuit resolve their difference without having a trial. Settlements often involve the payment of compensation by one party in satisfaction of the other party's claims.
  • Signature: includes the mark of a person unable to write, and "subscribe" includes the making of such a mark. See Texas Government Code 312.011
  • Statute of limitations: A law that sets the time within which parties must take action to enforce their rights.
  • Subpoena: A command to a witness to appear and give testimony.
  • Subpoena duces tecum: A command to a witness to produce documents.
  • Succeeding: means immediately following. See Texas Government Code 312.011
  • Testify: Answer questions in court.
  • Testimony: Evidence presented orally by witnesses during trials or before grand juries.
  • Tort: A civil wrong or breach of a duty to another person, as outlined by law. A very common tort is negligent operation of a motor vehicle that results in property damage and personal injury in an automobile accident.
  • Transcript: A written, word-for-word record of what was said, either in a proceeding such as a trial or during some other conversation, as in a transcript of a hearing or oral deposition.
  • Trial jury: A group of citizens who hear the evidence presented by both sides at trial and determine the facts in dispute. Federal criminal juries consist of 12 persons. Federal civil juries consist of six persons.
  • Truth in Lending Act: The Truth in Lending Act is a federal law that requires lenders to provide standardized information so that borrowers can compare loan terms. In general, lenders must provide information on Source: OCC
  • User fees: Fees charged to users of goods or services provided by the government. In levying or authorizing these fees, the legislature determines whether the revenue should go into the treasury or should be available to the agency providing the goods or services.
  • Venue: The geographical location in which a case is tried.
  • Verdict: The decision of a petit jury or a judge.
  • Victim Impact Statement: A written or spoken statement by the victim or his or her representative about the physical, emotional, and financial impact of a crime on the victim. The statement is given to the court before sentencing.
  • Voir dire: The process by which judges and lawyers select a petit jury from among those eligible to serve, by questioning them to determine knowledge of the facts of the case and a willingness to decide the case only on the evidence presented in court. "Voir dire" is a phrase meaning "to speak the truth."
  • Ward: means a person for whom a guardian has been appointed. See Texas Estates Code 22.033
  • Will: includes :
    (1) a codicil; and
    (2) a testamentary instrument that merely:
    (A) appoints an executor or guardian;
    (B) directs how property may not be disposed of; or
    (C) revokes another will. See Texas Estates Code 22.034
  • Writ: A formal written command, issued from the court, requiring the performance of a specific act.
  • Writ of certiorari: An order issued by the Supreme Court directing the lower court to transmit records for a case for which it will hear on appeal.