Child Custody Attorneys in Corpus Christi & Dallas, Texas
According to a Pew Research Center study, approximately one-quarter (23 percent) of children in the United States, under 18 years of age, live in single-parent households. In every divorce scenario, determining who gets child custody rights is often a vital concern. If you are considering a divorce or amidst the divorce process, and trying to understand how to establish child custody arrangements, consulting with a knowledgeable Texas family law attorney is crucial for detailed guidance.
The Torres Attorneys are committed to providing experienced legal services and helping clients in divorce and child custody-related matters. Whether you're trying to establish or modify child custody arrangements, we will review your options and offer you the comprehensive guidance and advocacy you need to navigate key decisions. Our team will work diligently with all parties involved to address your concerns and protect your rights and your family's best interest.
The Torres Attorneys are proud to represent clients throughout Corpus Christi, Texas, and the surrounding areas of Dallas and Fort Worth.
Establishing a Child Custody Arrangement
In Texas, child custody or conservatorship is often a complicated matter between parents involved in a divorce or legal separation. Texas courts make it a priority to protect the best interest and welfare of the child when awarding custody rights. The separating or divorcing parents have two possible options to establish a child custody arrangement:
This requires both parents to work together to determine custody terms and conditions that are mutually acceptable. The final agreement will be presented to the Texas court for approval. The uncontested option affords both parents more control over the final agreement. The option is also quick and cost-efficient. An experienced lawyer can help in keeping the conversation as productive as possible and assisting in documenting the terms of the agreement to be presented to the court.
When the parents are unable to agree on custody terms and conditions, a family court may need to intervene. The ruling judge establishes child custody arrangements using their own discretion, while protecting the child's best interest and welfare. A knowledgeable child custody attorney can help present your case thoughtfully and enhance your prospects of arriving at a favorable custody arrangement.
Legal Custody vs. Physical Custody
In Texas, there are two types of child custody or conservatorship — legal custody and physical custody.
Legal custody determines the parent who has the right and responsibility to make crucial life decisions that affect their children. Legal custody may be sole or joint. The parent with legal custody makes key decisions about the child's education, health care, religion, and other important life matters.
Physical custody determines the parent with whom the child will live. Depending on the surrounding circumstances, physical custody may either be shared equally or unequally between both parents.
Factors to Consider when Determining Custody
According to the Texas Statutes Family Code Chapter 153, the court believes in joint managing conservatorship. Nonetheless, the child's best interest surpasses all other considerations. Here are some factors considered when determining child custody in Texas:
The child's preference or wishes
The current and future physical and emotional needs of the child
The ability of each parent to meet the child's needs
The parenting abilities of each parent
The willingness of each parent to establish a relationship between the child and the other parent
Each parent's ability to provide a safe and stable environment for the child
The moral fitness, physical health, and mental health of each parent
Evidence or history of domestic violence, abuse, or omission that indicates parental unfitness
The available or proposed programs to help each parent promote the child's best interest
Before granting a divorce, Texas courts usually require all divorcing parents who have minor children to complete a mandatory parenting class. The purpose of the parenting class is to help both the parents and their children deal with the trauma that comes with a divorce or legal separation. The requirement can be fulfilled online at an affordable cost.
Modifying an Existing Child Custody Arrangement
Under Texas law, either parent may file a petition seeking modification of child custody at any time. However, the parent seeking to modify the custody order must demonstrate that:
The child is at least 12 years old and wishes to change the primary caregiver
There has been a substantial change in circumstances since the original order was made
The proposed modifications to the order would serve the child's best interests
There are certain major life events that give you the opportunity to request a change to your existing child custody agreement. These include:
Involuntary loss of job
The other parent isn't holding up their end of the agreement
Child abuse or neglect by either parent
Changes in the parent's marital status
Work with Experienced Child Custody Attorneys in Corpus Christi, Texas
Establishing or modifying a child custody arrangement can be an emotional experience. Trying to agree on parental responsibility and allocating parenting time to your estranged spouse can make the process even more difficult and overwhelming. Therefore, consulting with a knowledgeable Texas child custody attorney is crucial for proper guidance and to protect your family's best interest and future.
The Torres Attorneys are highly experienced and knowledgeable in family law, divorce, and child custody matters. As your attorneys, we will offer you the comprehensive legal guidance you need to establish or modify a child custody arrangement. Our team will work diligently with all parties involved to establish a fair parenting arrangement, including child custody, visitation periods, and other parental responsibilities.
Reliable Child Custody Attorneys Serving
Corpus Christi, Texas
If you are trying to establish or modify a child custody arrangement, contact The Torres Attorneys today for a one-on-one consultation. Our attorneys will offer you the experienced legal counsel and advocacy you need to navigate important decisions in your conservatorship proceedings. We proudly serve clients throughout Corpus Christi, Dallas, and Fort Worth, Texas.