Divorce is a difficult thing to go through for families and the changes it brings about can be difficult for both parents and children. This is particularly true in cases where parents cannot agree on how to divide their assets and debts, and especially when they cannot come to a mutually satisfactory agreement regarding custody and parenting time.
Some couples, of course, are able to overlook their differences and work out a custody agreement between themselves which fits their needs. Unfortunately, many couples are not able to do this and require the intervention of a court. In such situations, the court has to decide on an arrangement that is in the best interests of any children involved.
Family courts in Texas and in other states work with state laws which lay out factors regarding what is in the best interests of the children and there are certain presumptions under state law. For instance, Texas law presumes that appointing a child’s parents as joint managing conservators is in the best interests of the child. Texas law also presumes that it is not in the best interests of a child to have unsupervised visitation with the child if there is credible evidence of neglect of abuse of the child, a spouse, or the other parent. Other presumptions are laid out in Texas law and can impact how child custody cases turn out.
Another important aspect of the law is the consideration of various factors related to the best interests of children. In our next post, we’ll pick up on this point and look at how an experienced family law attorney can help a parent advocate for him- or herself in child custody proceedings.