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Randall
Wilhite

Senior Partner, Board Certified

Profile

Randall Wilhite is regarded as one of the most distinguished family law attorneys in Texas and has represented clients in a full range of family law matters for over 38 years. He is experienced in litigation, arbitration and mediation. He specializes in complex property disputes, stock option and restricted stock issues, retirement assets, employee benefits, taxation issues, characterization of assets as separate or community property, business valuation and division and other valuation issues. As a mediator, he has settled over 2,600 family law cases, with an emphasis on complex legal issues, valuation disputes, tax issues and business divisions.

As a Certified Public Accountant, Randy has the background to handle sophisticated tax and business cases. He is also one of the very few practicing attorneys in the United States who is Accredited in Business Valuation by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a BBA in Accounting and received his Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of Houston College of Law in 1979.

  • DISTINCTIONS And CERTIFICATIONS

    Randy is listed in Best Lawyers in America (Woodward/White, Inc. 2005-2017), and has been given the highest possible AV rating his entire legal career by the Martindale Hubbell Law Directory. For several years, Martindale Hubbell has also recognized Randy in its Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers. He sat on the Texas Board of Legal Specialization’s Family Law Certification Examination Board for several years, where he developed and graded exams for the certification of Board Certified Family Law Attorneys.

    The Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Award for the Best Continuing Legal Education Presentation in Texas Family Law (Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices) (2002 – 2003) Certifications.

    • Board Certified in Family Law, Texas Board of Legal Specialization
    • Accredited in Business Valuation by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
    • Texas Board of Legal Specialization, Family Law Certification Examination Board (Developed and graded exam for certification in Texas as a Board-Certified Family Law Attorney, 2003 – 2011)
    • Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization since 1984
    • Board Certified in Family Law Trial Advocacy by the National Board of Trial Advocacy (1995 – 2010, re-certified 2000 & 2005); NTBA Board of Examiners: 1996 – 2006 (Wrote & Graded Examinations)
    • Fellow, American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers (1989 – 2018)
    • Fellow, International Academy of Family Lawyers (2006 – 2018)
    • Certified Mediator [Attorney – Mediator Institute, Family Law Mediation 1993)]
    • Teaching Faculty, ABA Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute, University of Houston Law Center [2000 – 2006 (Advanced Course on Business Valuation, 2001, 2003 & 2005)]
    • Teaching Faculty, South Texas College of Law Trial Advocacy Institute, 2009
  • PROFESSIONAL And COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

    • Houston Bar Association, Family Law Section, 1984 – 1985
      Director
    • American Bar Association, Family Law Section
      Member
    • State Bar of Texas, Family Law Section
      Member (Family Law Council)
    • American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
      Member
    • Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists
      Member
    • International Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers
      Member
  • PUBLICATIONS

    Randy has co-authored five published books on Texas family law, including an annotated version of the Texas Family Code that digests and abstracts important case law interpreting the Texas family law statutes; The Texas Family Law Handbook, a comprehensive treatise on Texas family law and a formbook on Texas family law that provides lawyers with suggested forms and supporting law for use in their practices. The books are part of the highly regarded O’Connor’s “Annotated Code Series” and “Expert Series” published by Jones McClure Publishing. He is also co-author of Texas Family Law – Direct & Cross Examination – A Focus on Property Issues, a three-volume set published by Imprimatur Press that provides ideas, questions and outlines for direct and cross-examination in the trial of a Texas divorce property case. Recently, Randy has authored a textbook used by law students studying Texas Marital Property Rights at the University of Texas School of Law.

    • Alternative Dispute Resolution in Family Law Cases, 2011
    • The Ten Most Important Rules of Direct & Cross Examination of CPAs and Forensic Experts, 2012
    • Navigating the Maze: Impact of Estate Planning on Marital Estate in a Divorce, 2012
    • Co-Author, O’Connor’s Texas Family Law Practice, Jones McClure Publishing (2006 – 2014), Treatise on Texas Family Law
    • Co-Author, O’Connor’s Texas Family Code Plus, Jones McClure Publishing (2006 – 2013), Annotated Texas Family Code
    • Co-Author, Texas Family Law – Direct & Cross Examination – A Focus on Property Issues, (Imprimatur Press 2005)
    • Author, O’Connor’s Texas Family Law Forms, Jones McClure Publishing (2014), Annotated Texas Family Code
    • Author, Texas Marital Property Rights, (Jones McClure Publishing 2013-2014), Textbook used at the University of Texas School of Law, Austin, Texas
  • Speaking

    For over a decade, Randy has taught Texas Marital Property Rights and Texas Marital Relations and Divorce as an Adjunct Professor of Law at the University of Texas School of Law in Austin. He previously taught Advanced Family Law, Texas Marital Property Rights and Family Law Practice at the University of Houston Law School. For several consecutive years, he was a member of the Permanent Teaching Faculty of the American Bar Association Family Law Trial Advocacy Institute and, in addition to having been a regular Faculty Member of the Course, has also taught its Advanced Course on Business Valuation Advocacy.

    In addition, he has spoken and presented over 130 continuing legal education articles at seminars and institutes in Texas and around the United States. He has been presented with the Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Award for the Best Continuing Legal Education Presentation in Texas Family Law for his article on Valuation of Closely Held Businesses and Professional Practices.

    Valuation of Property:

    Business Drafting to Maintain the Separate Property of the Involved Entities (Essentials of Business Law Texas Bar CLE Course, Houston, TX, 2018); Marital Property Issues in Drafting Planning Documents (Houston Estate and Financial Forum, Houston, TX, 2018); Valuation of Stock Options, Appreciation Rights and Other Equity Compensation (AICPA/AAML National Conference on Divorce, New Orleans, LA, 2016); Valuation of Trust Interests: Using Trust Experts to Analyze and Value Trust Interests (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2014); Risk and Reward: Valuing Private Equity and Venture Capital Investment (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2014) Business Valuation Statistics (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2010

    Taxation & Tax Planning:

    Marital Property Issues in Drafting Planning Documents (Texas State Bar Estate Planning and Probate Drafting, Houston, 2015); Corporate and Estate Planning Issues Affecting Family Law (South Texas College of Law Probate and Estate Planning Course 2013); Complex Tax Issues in Family Law (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course 2009)

    Division of Property:

    Distributions from Business Entities: Six Possible Approaches to Characterization, (State Bar of Texas New Frontiers Institute, 2015, Denver, Colorado); Trust Interests and Marital Property Division: Finding It, Defining It and Dividing It (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2014); Handling Estate & Corporate Planning Considerations in Divorce (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2012); Discovering Hidden Assets (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2010)

    Mediation & Arbitration:

    Winning at Mediation, State Bar of Texas, Advanced Family Law Course (San Antonio, Texas 2015); Winning at Mediation; Negotiation Strategies for Maximizing Results at Mediation (State Bar of Texas, Advanced Family Law Course, August 2012); Maximizing Results at Mediation, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course (San Antonio, Texas 2011)

    Ethics:

    “The Edge of Ethics: Representing the Impaired Client”, American Bar Association Family Law Section 2016 Annual Meeting, Quebec, Canada

    Retirement Assets & Employee Benefits:

    Military Divorce Issues: Retirement & Support; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Retirement Assets & QDROs; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Retirement (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2007); Stock Options (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2006); Retirement Assets (The University of Texas At Austin School of Law, Family Law on the Front Lines Seminar, Galveston, Texas, 2005); Retirement Plans – Identification, Characterization, Valuation & Division (Houston Bar Association Family Law Seminar, March 2004); Stock Options (State Bar Advanced Family Law Course, 2003); Employee Benefits: Identify, Value, Divide & Award (The University of Texas At Austin School of Law, Family Law on the Front Lines Seminar, Austin, Texas, 2003); Retirement Assets: Identify, Value, Divide & Award (The University of Texas School of Law Family Law on the Frontlines Seminar, Galveston, 2002); Community Property & Federal Tax Laws for Employee Benefits, Golden Handcuffs, Qualified and Non-Qualified Stock Options & Deferred Compensation in Divorce (Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Annual Trial Institute, 2001 & Houston Bar Association Family Law Section, 2001); Employee Benefits  — Identify, Value, Divide & Award  — To QDROS and Beyond (Houston Bar Association Family Law Seminar, 2000); Retirement Benefits In A Texas Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium on Divorce Taxation In Texas, 1995); Retirement Benefits In A Texas Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium in Family Law, 1992); Retirement Benefits In Divorce (NBI Symposium on Family Law Taxation, 1991).

    Evidence, Discovery, Procedure & Bankruptcy:

    The Intersection of Family Law & Bankruptcy (Federal Bankruptcy Bench/Bar Conference, Corpus Christi, 2016); Presenting at Trial (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course 2013, San Antonio, Texas); Top Ten Testifying Tips for Expert Witnesses (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2012); Using Documents in the Courtroom (Ultimate Trial Notebook, State Bar of Texas, San Antonio, Texas, 2009)

    Miscellaneous & Course Director & Planning Committee:

    Premarital and Marital Agreements:  Attacking, Defending, Drafting and Interpreting (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course 2014, San Antonio, Texas); Course Planning Committee (American Institute of Public Accountants / American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers National Conference on Divorce), Las Vegas 2012 & 2014; Course Director (State Bar of Texas New Frontiers in Texas Marital Property), New Orleans 2009

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Education

University of Houston Law Center, Houston, Texas

Honors: Phi Delta Phi
Law Review: Houston Law Review, Editor

University of Texas, Austin, Texas

Bar Admission

Texas, 1979


Valuation of Property:

Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices (South Texas College of Law Advanced Civil Trial Course, February 2008); Valuation of Assets; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Business Valuation, State Bar of Texas Family Law Webcast (Dallas, Texas 2007); Practical Business Valuation, State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Institute (El Paso, Texas 2007); Discounts in the Valuation of Closely Held Businesses (State Bar of Texas New Frontiers Institute, October 2005, Scottsdale, Arizona); Valuation of Assets in Divorce (State Bar of Texas, Advanced Family Law Course, August 2005); Presenting & Attacking Valuation Evidence in Trial – Real Estate & Business Valuation (Houston Bar Association Family Law Seminar – Property Issues (2005); Valuation of Marital Assets (The University of Texas At Austin School of Law, Family Law on the Front Lines Seminar, Galveston, Texas, 2004); “The Use and Abuse of Discounts” – Disappearing Marital Assets (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2004); Valuation of Difficult Property (University of Houston College of Law 2003 Advanced Family Law Course); The Basics of Business Valuation (Houston Bar Association Family Law Institute), April 2003;   Valuation  of  Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices  (State  Bar  of  Texas  2002); Advanced Family Law Course, August 2002); Valuation of Difficult Property,  (University of Houston College of Law 2002 Annual Family Law Seminar, Dallas & Houston, June, 2002); Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices (University of Houston College of Law 2001 Annual Family Law Seminar, Dallas & Houston, October, 2001); Author, The Effect of Goodwill in Determining the Value of a Business in a Divorce, 35 Family Law Quarterly, pp. 351 – 381 (A.B.A., Summer 2001); Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices (University of Houston College of Law 2001 Annual Family Law Seminar, Dallas & Houston, June, 2001); Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices (University of Houston College of Law 2000 Annual Family Law Seminar, September 2000); Valuation of Closely Held Businesses & Professional Practices (University of Houston College of Law 1999 Annual Family Law Seminar, September 1999); Valuation of Closely Held Business Interests & Professional Practices (University of Houston College of Law 1998 Annual Advising Small Business Owners Seminar); Valuation of Closely Held Business Interests In Divorce (University of Houston College of Law 1997 Annual Family Law Seminar); Valuation Variation:   A Practical Study of the Latent Tax Impact On The Division of Marital Property (American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Symposium on Federal Issues Affecting Family Law).

Taxation & Tax Planning:

Taxation in Divorce & Family Law Cases; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Things Worse than Paying the IRS; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Dissecting the Complex Tax Return (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course 2004);  Litigating Tax Issues (Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists Trial Institute, New Orleans 2004); Tax Issues in Divorce (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course 2003); Tax Motivated Drafting – Stock Options, Alimony Agreements, Divisive Reorganizations & Redemptions (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Drafting Institute, December 1999); Co-Director and Speaker (Federal Tax Issues in Divorce, Including Drafting Tax Provisions in Divorce Decrees – With Forms and Checklists), South Texas College of Law Family Law Conference, February 1999; Taxation of Marital Property Transfers (South Texas College of Law Seminar on Marital Property Rights, October 1998); Federal Tax Issues In Family Law:   Issues, Current Developments And Common Tax Traps For the Family Law Practitioner (South Texas College of Law 6th Annual Family Law Seminar, 1996); “Tax Ethics” In Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium on Divorce Taxation in Texas, August 1995); Taxation Of Property Transfers Incident To Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium on Divorce Taxation In Texas, 1995); Tax, Accounting & Financial Terminology (State Bar of Texas, Litigation Section Symposium on Accounting and Tax Issues Affecting Litigation, 1994); Divorce Taxation In Texas (NBI Symposium on Family Law, 1992) Valuation Variation:   A Practical Study of the Latent Tax Impact On The Division of Marital Property (American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Symposium on Federal Issues Affecting Family Law).

Division of Property:

Myths & Misconceptions in Texas Community Property Law (Constitutional, Fundamental and Foundational Issues Ripe for Challenge During the Next 10 Years) (State Bar of Texas New Frontiers Institute, 2007, Memphis, Tennessee) Employee Benefits (The University of Texas School of Law Family Law on the Frontlines Seminar, Galveston, Texas 2007); Property Silver Bullets (Ultimate Trial Notebook, State Bar of Texas, New Orleans, Louisiana, 2006);  Unique Characterization Issues (New Frontiers in Marital Property Law, State Bar of Texas, San Francisco, California, 2006); Economic Contribution (University of Houston College of Law Annual Family Law Seminar, Dallas 2006); What are My Options:  The Characterization, Taxation, Valuation & Division of Stock Options & Restricted Stock, (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2006); Economic Contribution and Tracing Separate Property, (Houston Bar Association Family Law Institute, March 2006); Sophisticated Corporate Structures, (State Bar of Texas New Frontiers Course, Colorado Springs, Colorado, 2004), Advanced Property Division (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2003); An Overview of Economic Contribution (University of Houston College of Law Annual Family Law Seminar, Dallas & Houston, 2003); The Use of Trusts in Family Law, (State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Drafting Institute, 2001); Equitable Reimbursement Under The 1999 Texas Family Code Statutes (Burta Rhoads Raborn Family Law Inns of Court, 1999); Dividing Privately Owned Businesses (State Bar of Texas 25th Annual Advanced Family Law Course, 1999); Handling Liabilities in A Divorce (State Bar of Texas 22nd Annual Marriage Dissolution Institute, 1999); Property Division In Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium on Family Law Taxation, 1992); Divorce: Division of Property, Child Support & Alimony (National Business Institute Symposium on Family Law, 1991). Trust Interests and Marital Property Division: Finding It, Defining It and Dividing It (American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Bi-Annual Conference on Divorce, Charlotte, North Carolina, 2015)

Mediation & Arbitration:

Maximizing Results at Mediation, State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Course (Galveston, Texas 2008); Negotiation Strategies & Skills, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course (San Antonio, Texas 2007); The Great Debate on Collaborative Law, Marriage Dissolution Course by the State Bar of Texas (Austin, 2006); Family Law Arbitration, Houston Bar Association Alternative Dispute Resolution Section (March, 2006); Family Law Mediation, Burta Rhoads Raborn Family Law Inns Of Court (March, 2006); Interest-Based Negotiation & Mediation, University of Texas School of Law Collaborative Law Spring Retreat (Austin, Texas, February, 2006); Creative Strategies in Mediation, Texas Advanced Paralegal Seminar, Paralegal Division of the State Bar of Texas (Austin, Texas, September, 2005); Focus on the Finish Line: Mediation v. Litigation (American Institute of Certified Public Accountants & American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers Annual Conference on Divorce, Las Vegas, Nevada, 2004); Preparing for Mediation (Houston Legal Assistants Association Docket Management Seminar, 2003); Slam Dunk the Mediation:  Winning Strategies for Preparing and Executing Effective Mediations of Property and Custody Issues in Divorce (State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Institute, 2002); Mediation of a Marital Property Case (South Texas College of Law Seminar on Advanced Marital Property Rights, 2001); Mediation for Family Law Legal Assistants (Half Moon Continuing Legal Education Seminar for Family Law Legal Assistants, 2001); Mediation Tools (Division of Assets and Allocation of Liabilities) & Mediation Workshop Leader (South Texas College of Law Annual Mediation Training Seminar, 1999); Family Law Mediation (Houston Bar Association Seminar, 1999); The Changing Face Of Mediation (South Texas College of Law Family Law Mediation Seminar, 1998); Effective Preparation for Mediation, Gulf Coast Family Law Specialists, 1997;

Ethics:

Ethical Issues in the Family Law Practice; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); The Impact of Divorce on Children and the Role of the Family Law Attorney: Advocate v. Counselor, A Dichotomy (Burta Rhoads Raborn Family Law Inns of Court, 2001); The Rewards of Decency: Professionalism and Legal Ethics (Live Oak CLE),,  2000 – Panel Discussion; “Tax Ethics” In Divorce (National Business Institute Symposium on Divorce Taxation in Texas, 1995).

Evidence, Discovery, Procedure & Bankruptcy:

The Top Ten Things That Work in the Courtroom, State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Course (Galveston, Texas 2008) Bankruptcy in Divorce; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Creative Cross Examination (Ultimate Trial Notebook, State Bar of Texas, New Orleans, Louisiana, 2006);  Electronic Evidence (State Bar of Texas 27th Annual Marriage Dissolution Institute, 2004); Obtaining Discovery Out of State, (Burta Rhoads Raborn Family Law Inns of Court, 2002); Riding the Information Highway:  Some Rules for the Internet Road – Legal, Ethical and Practical Guidelines (Ask the Experts, Houston, Texas, 2001); Co-Director and Speaker (Unusually Obtained Evidence), South Texas College of Law Family Law Conference, 1999; Unusually Obtained Evidence (Houston Bar Association Family Law Section, 1999); Dealing With Unusually Obtained Evidence In A Family Law Case (Family Law Inns of Court, 1998);Staying Warm After The Sheets Are Split:  Protecting Your Divorce Decree From Bankruptcy (South Texas College of Law 6th Annual Family Law Seminar, 1997); Bankruptcy in Family Law (Houston Bar Association Seminar, 1990).

Miscellaneous & Course Director & Planning Committee:

Child Custody and the Hague Convention; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Third Party Rights With Children; Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Family Law Torts (Physical Torts & Economic/Financial Torts); Moderator, Family Law Practice: Federal, Multi-state, and Advocacy Update, State Bar of Texas Webcast (2007); Planning Committee, State Bar of Texas Ultimate Trial Notebook, 2006; Course Director, Marriage Dissolution Course by the State Bar of Texas (Austin, 2006); Planning Committee, State Bar of Texas Marriage Dissolution Seminar, 2004; Planning Committee, State Bar of Texas New Frontiers in Family Law Seminar, 2004, 2005 & 2006; Planning Committees, State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law Course, 2002,  2003, 2005 & 2007; Course Director, Family Law For the General Practitioner & Legal Assistant, South Texas College of Law, 2001; Course Director, Family Law for the General Practitioner & Legal Assistant, South Texas College of Law, 2000; Houston Bar Association, Family Law Section, Family Law Seminar, Course Director, 1998; Rights of Grandparents in Visitation and Conservatorship Actions, 27 S. Tex L. Rev. 519; Children, Parents, & Grandparents:   Balancing the Rights of Association and Control, 1 Am. J. Fam. Law 473.