Texas Family Code - FAM § 201.015. De Novo Hearing Before Referring Court

(a) A party may request a de novo hearing before the referring court by filing with the clerk of the referring court a written request not later than the third working day after the date the party receives notice of:

(1) the substance of the associate judge's report as provided by Section 201.011 ;  or

(2) the rendering of the temporary order, if the request concerns a temporary order rendered by an associate judge under Section 201.007(a)(14)(C) .

(b) A request for a de novo hearing under this section must specify the issues that will be presented to the referring court.

(c) In the de novo hearing before the referring court, the parties may present witnesses on the issues specified in the request for hearing.  The referring court may also consider the record from the hearing before the associate judge, including the charge to and verdict returned by a jury.

(d) Notice of a request for a de novo hearing before the referring court shall be given to the opposing attorney under Rule 21a, Texas Rules of Civil Procedure .

(e) If a request for a de novo hearing before the referring court is filed by a party, any other party may file a request for a de novo hearing before the referring court not later than the third working day after the date the initial request was filed.

(f) The referring court, after notice to the parties, shall hold a de novo hearing not later than the 30th day after the date on which the initial request for a de novo hearing was filed with the clerk of the referring court.

(g) Before the start of a hearing by an associate judge, the parties may waive the right of a de novo hearing before the referring court in writing or on the record.

(h) The denial of relief to a party after a de novo hearing under this section or a party's waiver of the right to a de novo hearing before the referring court does not affect the right of a party to file a motion for new trial, motion for judgment notwithstanding the verdict, or other post-trial motion.

(i) A party may not demand a second jury in a de novo hearing before the referring court if the associate judge's proposed order or judgment resulted from a jury trial.


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