The stress of going through a divorce is compounded when there are children involved. Dissolution of your marriage changes the circumstances regarding raising your children and the time you spend with them. Decisions regarding child custody and visitation are important to maintaining a close, loving relationship with your children. Under Texas law, custody is referred to as “conservatorship” and visitation as “possession”.
Texas law encourages parents to work together, if possible, to create their parenting plan regarding conservatorship and possession of the children. At the Whittemore Law Firm, we know how challenging custody battles can be and how important it is to work diligently to create a parenting plan that is in the best interest of the children. These decisions are important to devise a parenting plan that ensures frequent, meaningful parenting time for each parent but is workable with regards to the parents’ and children’s unique situations.
Elements of Parenting Plans
Texas law has a rebuttable presumption that joint conservatorship is in the best interest of the children. With “Joint Managing Conservatorship”, the rights and duties of each parent are set out in the order. This includes:
- Establishing which parent will provide the primary household for the children
- Providing for how the parents will share in the decision-making process, including how they will decide on the children’s education, extracurricular activities, health care, and other decisions affecting the children.
- Determining how the parents will provide for the children’s health care costs and other aspects of financial support.
- How the parents plan to resolve parental disputes about child care and decision making without needing to seek court intervention.
- Outlining how they will make modifications to the parenting plan when necessary.
Texas law includes a “Standard Possession Order”, however, parents can design a custom possession and access schedule that better meets the needs of the children. A possession and access schedule includes:
- A schedule that sets out parenting time for each parent
- How school holidays and summer vacation will be handled
- Who will be responsible for transportation of the children from one home to the other
- Notification requirements for changes
In developing the plan, the statute states the goal is to “optimize the development of a close and continuing relationship between each parent and the child.” We know how important your children are to you and we strive to create a plan to honor your parental rights and achieve the best interests of your children.
For a free 20-minute consultation, Contact the Whittemore Law Firm at 832-215-3706
Whittemore Law Firm is dedicated to helping clients navigate difficult family law and divorce issues. Whittemore Law Firm serves clients in The Woodlands, Conroe, Montgomery County, Houston, Harris County, and throughout the surrounding area. If you need help, contact Whittemore Law Firm now and benefit from more than 21 years of family law experience so we can help make sure you get a fair resolution.