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How Important Is a Parenting Plan in Texas Child Custody Cases?

Posted on in Child Custody

Austin, TX Child Custody lawyerOne of the most difficult issues to work through in many Texas divorces is child custody. Even if the couple agrees that divorce is the best option for their future, agreeing on what happens with their children is something that they may not agree on.

However, if the couple cannot negotiate and agree on child custody and parenting plan, the judge presiding over their divorce will make that decision for them and their decision may not be one that either parent wants.

Negotiating a Parenting Plan

A parenting plan puts in writing how the couple will co-parent in the future. Some of the issues that need to be addressed include:

  • Where will the child live? If the child will live primarily with one parent, then a visitation schedule with the other parent needs to be set. The parenting time schedule should also include where the child will spend birthdays, holidays, school vacations, summer vacations, and other events.

  • How will decisions about the child’s education, where they will go to school, medical treatment, what religion will the child be raised in, and any other major issues be decided?

  • How will the parents communicate with each other? This is especially important if the relationship between the two is an acrimonious one. Communication methods can include text messages and emails. If there are other issues, such as the existence of a restraining order, then third parties may be needed

  • How will future issues be resolved if the parents cannot reach an agreement? The parenting plan should address how the parents will handle disagreements before the move to file any petitions with the court.

Child Custody for Unmarried Couples

There are many couples who choose to live together and have children but who never entered into a legal marriage. Unfortunately, there is also a high rate of those couples breaking up, just as with married couples. Although there is no legal action to end those relationships (like divorce), legal child custody still needs to be determined. Otherwise, either parent can just take the child and move away and the other parent would have no legal rights to fight that move or be involved in any other decisions in the child’s life.

Contact an Austin, TX Child Custody Lawyer

Whether you are going through a divorce or are an unmarried parent, having a skilled and dedicated Travis County child custody attorney advocating for your parental rights is essential for achieving a favorable outcome in your case. Call Powers and Kerr, PLLC at 512-610-6199 to schedule a confidential consultation and find out what legal options you may have.

Source:

https://guides.sll.texas.gov/child-custody-and-support/child-custody

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