Support Before, During, and After Divorce
Here at Alexandra Geczi PLLC, we have helped hundreds of clients figure out child custody arrangements. Although the State of Texas sets out a standard possession schedule, that standard may not be a good fit for everyone. We also have many resources to help our clients figure out creative schedules to fit their family needs.
To offer you the best possible support, Alexandra Geczi PLLC has a team of professionals and a library of information available to help our clients address some of the emotional aspects of custody and visitation during divorce. For example, we rely on a range of therapists to help you deal with the grief, anxiety, shame, and other feelings that you may be experiencing surrounding this process, and we also have professionals to help your children understand what is going on. For those who want an option other than therapy, we have other resources on how to answer the tough questions that children will ask about divorce and separation.
Things to Know Regarding Texas Child Custody
In Texas, what most people refer to as custody is called conservatorship. There are two types of conservators: the managing conservator and the possessory conservator.
Under the Texas Family Code, it is presumed that parents will be named joint managing conservators, which means each parent is given a list of rights and duties that they share, in regards to the child, jointly, exclusively, or independently. For example, if the court finds that one parent is more attuned to the child’s education needs, they may grant the parent the exclusive right to educational decision-making.
In some cases, one parent is named the sole managing conservator, which means that person is granted exclusive rights to make decisions for that child. When one parent is named the sole managing conservator, the other parent is designated as the possessory conservator, which means they have the right to “possess” their child through an ordered visitation schedule.
Determining Child Custody
There are many factors that may be considered when determining child custody. In an ideal situation, both parents will be able to work out an arrangement that is acceptable for everyone. This helps to keep stress and fighting to a minimum, which is important for the children. When this is not possible, however, the following factors may be taken into account by mediators or judges:
- Work schedules
- Location of each parent
- Location of school(s)
- Age of children
- Abuse or neglect
- Desires of children
- And more
While the courts will listen to arguments, often the end result is an attempt to ensure that the child can have meaningful time with both parents, unless there is some type of abuse or extreme behavior involved. Encouraging strong bonds with both parents is very important, and that will typically be the goal of the courts.
Collateral witnesses are people apart from parents, or the conservators, who can offer insight on the well-being of a child, when the child is not with either parent. They can also offer their perspective and opinions on the child’s parent.
Some examples of collateral witnesses include teachers, family friends, coaches, or therapists. Although their testimonies may help you in court, complications still exist when it comes to your collateral witness, especially if they are not a mental health professional. Do not follow through on using a collateral witness in a custody dispute without the counsel of an experienced custody dispute attorney.
Whether you need to have an existing child custody situation modified or enforced, or you need to develop an initial custodial arrangement or parenting plan, Alexandra Geczi PLLC can help. We have years of experience handling complex child custody cases and we will fight for you and your family in court. Begin the process today and contact us to discuss your options!