Hammering Out Child Custody Issues in Your Texas Divorce
If you are facing a divorce and share children, you will need to hammer out child custody (called conservatorship in Texas) arrangements that you can both agree to, which can be one of the trickiest components of your divorce. If you and your divorcing spouse cannot agree regarding your custody arrangements, the court will do so on your behalf.
Keeping the Decision-Making Process Between Yourselves
Most couples consider it preferable to decide their shared children’s custody arrangements between themselves (whenever possible). While the court always bases its decisions regarding child custody on the children's best interests, there is no way that the judge involved in your case can know and understand your children and their needs the way you do. However, this fact does not mean that the court is going to intervene because you have yet to reach a custody agreement with your spouse. In fact, you have options that include:
Coming to a compromise between yourselves (with the guidance of your respective family law attorneys)
Allowing your respective attorneys to negotiate terms on your behalf
Taking the matter to mediation – where you, your spouse, and your respective attorneys will work with a professional mediator to find a middle ground
Often, forging child custody arrangements is less arduous when you break it down into basic parts, which tend to include:
What makes the most sense concerning the logistics of your lives, including where each of you works, where your children go to school, who has more time to focus on raising the children, if one of you staying in your family home with the children is an option, and more. Sometimes, the answers are right there in front of you if you can see past the stress of the divorce itself.
Legal custody refers to who will make important decisions related to your children’s health care, education, religious upbringing, and extracurricular activities. Parents often share legal custody, and if this is a suitable option, you can take this segment of your custody arrangements off the table. If not, you will need to determine who is better suited to taking on this important responsibility.
If one of you has better insurance coverage than the other, the question of who will cover your kids’ insurance may answer itself (this is an element of child support, which dovetails with child custody).
The vital point to be made here is that, when you break child custody down into manageable segments, the decision-making process itself can also become more manageable.
An Experienced Killeen Family Law Attorney Can Help
Attorney Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, understands how difficult child custody issues can be and has the experience and skill to help you negotiate terms that protect your parental rights and support your children’s best interests. Your case is important, so please do not hesitate to contact us online or call us at 254-501-4040 for more information today.