What is in the best interest of the child?
Texas divorce laws have a set of non-exclusive factors based on the Nanci Holley v. David Adams case, 544 S.W.2d 367 (Tex. 1976), and the court uses these as guidelines when considering custody of the child. This list includes:
• the child's desires;
• the child's physical and emotional needs, currently and in the future;
• either parent's physical and emotional danger to the child, currently and in the future;
• parental abilities of those who are seeking custody;
• any programs in place to assist these individuals while promoting the best interest of the child;
• the plans those who are seeking custody have for the children;
• whether each party has a stable home;
• any omissions or acts of the parent that could indicate the existing parent-child relationship should be questioned; and
• any reasons for any omissions or acts of the parent.
The court also is likely to consider which parent is the most involved in the child’s daily life. Who really takes care of the child’s everyday needs, such as staying on schedule, eating, maintaining educational requirements and medical attention?
Terms and Meanings in Texas Child Custody Laws
There are myriad legal terms used when courts weigh child custody and support laws in Texas.
For example, the term joint managing conservator is used when two parties, usually the parents, share rights and duties to the child. This applies even when one parent has primary possession or custody of the child.
Another term used in Texas child custody laws is possessory conservator. This is the parent or person who has visitation rights, but with whom the child does not live.
The courts also may assign what is called access to the child. This means a parent or person who is allowed to communicate and visit with the child. However, access prohibits this person from taking possession and control of the child away from the managing conservator.
For parents with possession of the child, they have the right of possession and control even to the exclusion of all other individuals, including the managing conservator. This applies at the time that a parent is in possession of the child.
Contacting a Dallas Divorce Attorney
Child support laws in Texas try to take into account the best interest of the child, and it is in your best interest to talk with a Dallas divorce attorney. The attorneys at Warren & Migliaccio have years of experience, and we’ll use that training to provide you peace of mind for the future, whatever the circumstances for your divorce or family law situation. From the initial consultation until the day your divorce and child custody arrangements are finalized, our Texas family lawyer team at Warren & Migliaccio is here to advocate on behalf of you and your children. Contact our Dallas law firm today at 1-888-584-9614.