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Galveston County Child Custody LawyerTexas law and culture encourage parents who are getting divorced to continue co-parenting as peaceably as possible. This means working as a team to raise minor children, despite the divorce and any personal differences between the parents. While this may not be easy, a firm commitment to co-parenting yields better-adjusted kids and less stressed parents, making the payoff substantial for everyone. Here are some things to include in your Texas parenting plan, or possession order, as you start the co-parenting journey together. 

Texas Parenting Plan Requirements

Certain things are nice to have in your parenting plan, but other things are essential. Things that you must have in your parenting plan include: 

  • Whether one or both parents will be managing conservators or possessory conservators. Managing conservators have the authority to make important decisions regarding healthcare, education, etc. for the children; possessory conservators have the authority to spend visitation time with the children


Galveston County Child Custody LawyerWhen parents of minor children in Texas create a child custody order or parenting plan, they agree to abide by the terms of the parenting plan under threat of court sanctions. This helps keep the children’s lives predictable and ensures parents do not experience unnecessary conflict over ever-changing schedules. But when a parent moves, gets a new job, or otherwise has a significant change in circumstances, an existing custody order may no longer be workable. Although Texas courts are wary of changing child custody orders frequently, especially if it appears a parent may be requesting a change to harass the other parent, there are certainly times when such a change is justifiable. 

Do We Need to Go to Court to Change Our Custody Order? 

If the changes to your custody arrangement are minor and you get along well with your child’s other parent, you may be able to agree to make adjustments without going to court. However, any agreement you come to is not enforceable and, if your child’s other parent is manipulative or abusive, an agreement outside of court may expose you to the risk of conflict. If you and the other parent cannot agree, you must both follow the existing order until it is successfully modified. 

Suit Affecting the Parent-Child Relationship

A petition to change a custody order is called a suit affecting the parent-child relationship, or SAPCR. An SAPCR must be filed in the court where your divorce or custody order was originally granted unless the child has moved. If you agree with the other parent about changes to the custody order, the petition can be completed as soon as the court approves it. 


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