Understanding Child Custody And Support In Texas
Divorcing parents are often most concerned about their children’s well-being and protecting the precious time that they have with them. In Texas, child custody is commonly referred to as “conservatorship.” The idea of conservatorship encompasses who houses and cares for a child (possessory conservatorship) and who makes legal decisions for them (managing conservatorship). A parent can receive one, neither or both of these responsibilities.
At Grable Grimshaw Mora PLLC, we will explain your options and protect your parental rights. We understand how stressful this process is and will do everything we can to secure the best plan for you and your children.
What Arrangement Works Best For Your Family?
There is no one-size-fits-all solution when determining a custody arrangement. Depending on your family’s unique circumstances, parents may share child-rearing responsibilities, or one parent will take responsibility. Typically, Texas favors joint custody arrangements where both parents are involved in their children’s lives.
- Joint conservatorship (joint custody): Parents share decisions about a child’s education, medical care, religious upbringing and other life issues. Typically, one parent will be the primary custodial parent while the other has visitation rights.
- Sole conservatorship (sole custody): When there are compelling reasons to do so, the child may fully live with one parent. That parent can hold all decision-making authority on their child’s behalf.
In some cases, a parent may be awarded physical custody or visitation rights of the child, but not legal custody. They could also be granted legal custody, but not physical custody rights. We will make sure that you understand your options, and we will fight for the best outcome possible.
Determining The Right Plan
You and your ex-spouse can create your own custody and visitation plan as long as the court agrees that it is in your child’s best interests. However, if parents cannot agree, a standard possession order (SPO) may likely apply. This is a set schedule established by the state of Texas for when a child should stay with each parent. Grable Grimshaw Mora PLLC can prepare you to enter negotiations, mediation or litigation that will result in a child custody arrangement that benefits your child.
Modifying Custody Orders
Families, and their plans, change over time. If your situation changes after the final divorce decree, your original arrangement may no longer work for you and your family. Our team can help you petition the court for a modification to the original plan. This modification must be approved by the court. You cannot alter your divorce order without official approval.
About Child Support
Texas state child support guidelines take several factors into consideration, including:
- The monthly resources of each parent
- The number of children a parent is supporting
- The type of possession order in place (specifying whether the child spends equal or unequal time with each parent, or is subject to the standard possession order)
- Whether alimony is being paid
For paying parents with monthly resources of $9,200 or less, child support will consist of a percentage of the total. For paying parents with more income, a family court may require a higher amount depending on “proven needs” of the child, which may include educational expenses, health insurance, extraordinary expenses of either parent or the child, each party’s possession time with the child, each parent’s ability to contribute to the child’s support, debts of either or both parents, employment benefits enjoyed by either or both parents, and other factors affecting the child’s best interest.
Contact Us To Discuss Your Options
Your child custody and support orders will have long-lasting effects on your children’s well-being and your family dynamics. Our family law attorneys at Grable Grimshaw Mora PLLC are dedicated to finding a solution that benefits your child and the entire family. We welcome your inquiry by phone at 210-761-5687 or by email through this website.