Katy Child Custody Lawyer
Child custody issues always involve a lot of emotions and stress. Warring spouses may become angry and spiteful; they may find it difficult to sit down together and come to a decision with the child’s best interests at heart.
When this happens it can have a negative impact on the child, both emotionally and in terms of their development. Even with the parents trying as hard as possible to prevent this, it still happens.
Our main goal here at Skillern Firm is to help parents come together. We want to protect the child as much as possible as their needs are by far the most important.
Our family law firm wants families to move on from the divorce as easily as possible and with as little disruption to the child’s life as we can manage.
Contact Skillern Firm Katy, TX
Here at Skillern Firm, we have negotiated with numerous parents, and with our help, they have come to custody arrangements that are not only fair but are also the best for their children.
The child comes first, and that is the core belief of every attorney and every Judge in Texas. Here at Skillern Firm, it is our main priority.
If you want to discuss your child custody case with one of our skilled Katy, TX child custody lawyers, please get in touch. Our family lawyers deal with all child support and family law matters.
We value our attorney-client relationship so call today at (936) 213-8479 and you can move forward in confidence, knowing you are in experienced hands.
What is a Child Custody Trial?
When spouses with children decide to divorce, it is common that both parents want to be the custodial parent; the parent who has the child most of the time.
In the majority of child custody cases and family law issues where both parents are fighting to be the custodial parent, the only person who can make the decision is the Judge.
Texas Law states that the courts must always make decisions based on the best interests of the children involved. Often, this decision is not the outcome that either party hoped for and this can leave you both unsatisfied.
This is where experienced child custody lawyers can really help. Through mediation and negotiation, they can help you come to an agreement where both parties are happy, or at least satisfied with the outcome.
Most Texas families want joint custody but this does not necessarily equate to a 50/50 split. Joint custody in Katy, Texas usually means that one parent has the child during the week, and the other at the weekend. During the period where you have the child, you are classed as the primary conservator. When your ex-spouse has the child, you have visitation rights.
If you have joint custody then you share the rights to make decisions that affect the child’s life such as decisions regarding education and medical care.
If the Judge has awarded a parent sole physical custody rights then they are named the sole managing conservator. In these cases, that parent has the right to make all of the important decisions regarding the needs of the child.
The court will usually only award sole legal custody when they believe the other parent may have a problem that could negatively affect the child’s wellbeing.
Issues with drugs, alcohol, or abuse may all be reasons to award the other parent sole custody.
Katy, TX Child Custody Laws
Many factors are considered by the court when deciding upon custody and conservatorship. Such as:
- Potential danger to the child from either parent.
- The parent’s stability.
- Previous parental involvement.
- The child’s emotional and physical needs.
- Family proximity.
- Child’s preference (age 12+).
Potential Danger to Child from Either Parent
The first important factor that a Katy, TX courtroom will look at in any child custody dispute is whether or not they believe either parent poses a threat to the child’s safety,
If either parent has any kind of history with the law, drugs, drinking, or violence this could seriously influence the decision.
If you do have a history in any of these areas, it does not mean you will automatically lose custody. You should seek the help of a skilled child custody lawyer and work with them to fight your side and present any accurate facts surrounding your history. If you have been clean from alcohol for 10 years, for example, the Judge may take a less harsh approach to their decision.
To prove that your ex is a danger to your children, you and your attorney will need to provide as much evidence as possible, such as text messages or police reports to make a strong argument.
The Parents’ Stability
Another important factor in the Judge’s decision is how stable each parent is in terms of their ability to maintain a job and provide for the child.
Your Katy child custody lawyers will be able to help you put together evidence for this.
According to Texas family law, the Judge cannot use gender as an influence in their decision. This means that it does not matter whether you are the father or the mother, you will have an equal chance at fighting for custody and gaining parental rights to your child.
Instead, the Judge will usually look at how involved you have been with your child so far.
If you are the parent who takes the children to the doctors and dentist appointments and you are the one who attends school parents’ evening, the Judge will want you to continue doing so. If you don’t win custody, they will still encourage you to turn up to these events.
If you are a full-time working parent, the Judge will not use this against you. However, if you work long hours or hours outside of the normal working days, the Judge will take this into account when making their final decision.
The Emotional and Physical Needs of the Child
The courts will always assess the parent’s ability to provide for their child’s needs, both physical and emotional. They will look at your ability to provide for these needs both now and in the future and they will consider whether each parent has the means to put their child’s needs first.
Numerous studies over the years have proven that children who grow up with both parents involved in their lives have a much better chance at a healthier development.
This means that in cases where both parents want access to their children, the courts will always try to make decisions that allow this to happen.
The courts will also look down upon any parent who engages in behavior that is meant to alienate the child from their other parent.
Family Proximity and Closeness
If your child has grown up with access to a tight and loving family unit, the court will always attempt to make a decision that allows the child to have access to that unit.
This may become difficult in cases where one spouse is moving to another state. In these cases, you, your experienced attorney, and the Judge may have to make some tough decisions.
The Child’s Preference
When the child reaches the age of 12, the Judge must also consider their preferences in which parent they would prefer to stay with.
Which Parent Is More Likely to Be Awarded Custody?
Texas judges will always make decisions on what is in the best interest of the child. There is no bias toward either party in custody battles in Texas. This means your gender will not influence any decisions.
Establishing Supervised Visitation Orders and Forming a Parenting Plan
Your Judge and your attorney will always prefer the outcome to be a custody plan that gives both parents access to the child with as much involvement as possible.
In certain cases, the courts will order that one party has the child for less time than their spouse. This will be laid out in the visitation orders from the courts and will depend upon what the Judge thinks is in the best interest of the child.
If one spouse has previous problems with violence, drug, or alcohol abuse, the other spouse may attempt to have these orders modified to restrict access or implement a supervision requirement.
The first step in creating a good parenting and custody plan is always to employ the help of a skilled child custody lawyer.
Enforcing Child Visitation Orders
Sometimes spouses violate their court orders because they are either jealous, bitter, or angry. They may attempt to alienate your children and turn them against you or they may stop you from seeing them all together.
When this happens you should make sure you tell your attorney about the situation. They will attempt to speak to your spouse. If that fails they may seek the help of the courts.
Negotiation and Mediation
In almost every case, the best scenario is when both parents come to a mutual agreement on the best possible course of action. While this may be difficult, with the help of a skilled family law attorney and through the use of negotiation and mediation, you will have the best possible chance of a fair and reasonable agreement.
Attorneys at Skillern Firm are skilled in mediation and negotiation for a reason and will do everything possible to ensure that you and your ex have a space to communicate without letting emotions take over.
Coming to an agreement like this is usually better for the children involved. When both parties agree, there is a lot less anger and hostility.
When you are leaving a partnership where dealing with your children’s needs was a joint responsibility, it is important that each parent has the means to provide for that child.
If you gave up a job to look after your child, and you win custody, you may need financial support from your ex-spouse to make sure you continue to meet their needs.
In child custody arrangements and family law, the partner who wins custody of the children is usually the one entitled to monetary support from the non-custodial parent.
Skillern Firm FAQ
Q: Does Texas favor mothers in custody cases?
A: No, under Texas Law, there is no bias toward gender in a child custody case. The parent’s involvement and their stability are much more important factors.
Q: Do I Need Representation?
A: Not by law, but we highly recommend it, especially if your spouse has representation.
Contact a Family Law Attorney Today
When it comes to matters involving children, you need an attorney with a legal specialization in family law. At Skillern Firm, we have a wealth of experience in dealing with family law cases that are just like yours.
Many of our attorneys have been practicing family law for decades, and are prepared to help spouses come to amicable decisions through our negotiation skills and preventing the breakdown of important discussions.
At Skillern Firm the attorney-client relationship is of the utmost importance to us, whatever the circumstances of your case, we will give it the personal attention it deserves. We will do everything possible to protect your well-being and adapt to your unique circumstances.
Give your local law office a call today at (936) 213-8479 for an initial consultation with a Katy child custody lawyer.
We are here to discuss your legal options and help you to make an informed decision about your next steps.