Wednesday, March 22, 2006

How This Works & How To Contribute

Periodically, short articles will be posted to this site - written by invited authors. Their byline, together with a short bio and photo (if they choose to provide one), will be included.

Topics will vary, and the articles may involve linking the reader to other information found on other sites. There's a lot of info out there.

If you would like to comment, suggest, or contribute, then please contact me at (210) 335-2546. However, I cannot address any communications dealing with specific cases, pending or past, as well as any questions requesting legal advice.

-- Judge Tom Rickhoff

The Professionals of Probate Court Two

The outstanding feature of this office is each and every individual who works as a part of this courtroom team. I hope to see their own contributions to this site at some point.

I simply have the best personnel of any court in the state, and I'm proud to claim it. Intuition, good fortune, somehow I stumbled upon a great group of people - I'm daily thankful they're here. And, from all the feedback I receive, everyone shares my appreciation.

In the photo are: (top row) Martin ("Marty") Collins, staff attorney; Herb Schaefer, administrative assistant; me; Eddie Maldonado, bailiff; (bottom row) Eleanor ("Elie") Castillo, assistant court auditor; Liz McDevitt, court auditor; Rebecca Gonzalez, court clerk; Sue Bean, court investigator; Veronica Bowles, court reporter.

To reach these folk, or to learn about our court procedures, please refer to the information provided at the Bexar County website.

- Judge Tom Rickhoff

This Blog's Purpose

This blog has been created and will be maintained as interactive support for those professionals dealing with the wide variety of issues facing our Bexar County Probate Court.

Invited contributors will include not only attorneys appearing in our court, but others who are critically involved in the sensitive issues we must address.

Health care professionals, agency workers, and representatives of various charitable organizations all have important information to share.

As a statutory probate court, the court over which I preside has original and exclusive jurisdiction (together with Probate Court No. One) over this county's probate matters, guardianships, and mental health commitments. Eminent domain controversies are also heard here.

Some of the most emotional and life-altering decisions, therefore, are addressed in these first floor courtrooms. Because our work is so important, sensitive, and specialized, I would like us to share the educational material we feel is most significant. As an example, attorney Kelly Cross provided research about the syndrome associated with hoarders so I could understand the Adult Protective Services case we were hearing, or there may be research about the value of an oak tree in a condemnation case that would be helpful to the commissioners.

- Judge Tom Rickhoff