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Can I Get Sole Custody of My Child in Texas?

 Posted on April 20, 2023 in Family Law

Galveston, TX Child Custody AttorneysNothing is more important than your child’s welfare. If your marriage has broken down, if you have separated from your partner, or if you are no longer in a relationship with your child's other parent, you will want to ensure that you will be able to continue to provide the love, support, and care your child needs. During a divorce or family law case, you may be uncertain about how issues related to child custody will be handled. Based on the circumstances of your case, you may believe that you should have sole custody of your child. However, it is important to understand when this type of custody may be possible and the factors that courts will consider when making decisions about custody arrangements.

Understanding Conservatorship in Texas Family Law Cases

Child custody is often broken down into two components: legal custody and physical custody. In Texas, legal custody is known as conservatorship, and it involves the right to make decisions about how a child will be raised, including the medical treatments they will receive, where they will attend school, and where they will primarily live. In most cases, courts prefer to put joint managing conservatorship arrangements in place, giving both parents a say in how their children will be raised. In fact, Texas law presumes that joint managing conservatorship is in the best interest of the child.

However, joint managing conservatorship may not be appropriate in some situations, and a parent may argue that it would not be in the child's best interests. A parent's history of domestic violence may be a reason why joint custody arrangements should not be put in place. Other situations where sole custody may be appropriate may include when a parent is absent or incarcerated in prison or when the level of conflict between parents makes it impossible for them to cooperate in making decisions for their children.

If the court determines that sole managing conservatorship would be in the child's best interests, one parent will have decision-making authority in various aspects of the child's life, without the need to consult with the other parent. They will be able to determine the location of the child's primary residence, consent to medical and dental treatments or psychiatric care for the child, make decisions about the child's education, and address other legal concerns.

While sole managing conservatorship will designate a person as the custodial parent, this does not necessarily mean that the other parent will not be involved in the child's life. The non-custodial parent may be named a possessory conservator, giving them the right to regular visitation time with the child. In general, a non-custodial parent may only be restricted from seeing or spending time with their child if this would put the child's physical or emotional welfare at risk.

During their visitation time, the non-custodial parent will have the duty to provide the necessary care and protection for the child and provide food, shelter, and clothing, and they will have the right to make decisions about emergency medical care and religious or moral training. A possessory conservator will usually also have the right to receive important information about the child from the other parent, including details about their health and welfare and access to medical and educational records. They will also be able to consult with doctors or school officials, attend children's activities, and be designated as the child's emergency contact.

Contact Our Galveston Child Conservatorship Lawyer

Obtaining sole custody of your child in Texas is a complex process that requires careful consideration and preparation. Texas courts prioritize the child's best interests when determining custody arrangements, and factors such as the identity of the primary caregiver, the willingness of parents to cooperate, and any history of abuse or neglect may be taken into account. If you are seeking sole custody, it is essential to consult with an experienced Galveston County child custody attorney who can provide you with effective legal representation to help you achieve the best outcome for you and your child. To learn how Daniel R. Bacalis, P.C. can assist with these issues, contact our office at 409-392-1511 and arrange a free consultation.


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