06 Sep Parental Rights in Texas: A Comprehensive Guide
Parental rights are the cornerstone of a child’s well-being, and understanding these rights is crucial for parents navigating the legal landscape in Texas. Whether you are going through a divorce, separation, or simply seeking clarity on your rights as a parent, this guide aims to provide you with a comprehensive overview of parental rights in the Lone Star State.
- Custody and Conservatorship:
In Texas, the term “conservatorship” is used to refer to custody arrangements. There are two types of conservatorship: sole managing conservatorship and joint managing conservatorship. While sole managing conservatorship grants one parent primary decision-making authority, joint managing conservatorship allows both parents to share decision-making responsibilities regarding the child’s well-being.
- Possession and Access:
Possession and access pertain to the schedule of when each parent spends time with the child. Texas law encourages frequent and continuing contact with both parents unless it is not in the best interest of the child. A Standard Possession Order is a common framework used to establish visitation schedules, but parents can also create a custom plan that suits their unique circumstances.
- Child Support:
Child support is the financial contribution from one parent to the other to cover the child’s living expenses. Texas follows guidelines based on a percentage of the paying parent’s income. Factors like the number of children and any special needs are taken into account.
- Decision-Making Authority:
Even in cases of joint managing conservatorship, one parent may be designated with the exclusive right to make certain decisions, such as those related to the child’s education, medical care, and religious upbringing.
If a parent wants to move more than 100 miles away or out of state, they must obtain permission from the other parent or the court. This is to ensure that the child’s best interests are considered when a significant change in location is proposed.
- Modification and Enforcement:
Life circumstances can change, and modifications to custody, visitation, and support orders may be necessary. Courts can modify orders if there is a substantial change in circumstances. Additionally, enforcement measures are available for parents who are not fulfilling their obligations.
Navigating parental rights in Texas requires a solid understanding of the legal framework. While this guide provides an overview, it is important to consult a qualified family law attorney for advice tailored to your specific situation. Whether you’re negotiating custody, visitation, or support, the well-being of your child remains the focal point in all legal proceedings.
At Navarrette | Bowen, P.C., we are committed to helping parents protect their rights and the best interests of their children. Our experienced family law attorneys are here to guide you through the complexities of parental rights, ensuring a brighter future for your family.