6034 West Courtyard Drive, Suite 100,
Austin, TX 78730

Call Us512-610-6199

New Bill Would Change How Parenting Time is Divided

Posted on in Child Custody

Texas custody attorney, Texas family law attorneyA new law, House Bill 453, was recently introduced in the Texas Legislature. If passed, the law would establish a presumption of equality between both fathers and mothers in regards to the division of parenting time during divorce proceedings. Technically, the legal presumption that favored mothers over fathers was eliminated in 1974. However, the law still provides that one parent will be the main custodian of the child, leaving the other parent time according to a standard schedule. If passed, the new law could significantly affect custody determinations, so if you are considering a divorce and have children, it is important to contact an experienced Williamson County complex child custody attorney who can explain your legal options.

House Bill 453

Currently, Texas law does not retain a provision for an equal division of parenting time between both parents. Although some judges consider granting schedules that reflect this policy, many others do not. House Bill 453 attempts to address this by changing the law to help parents share the duties and rights of raising a child equally, even after a marriage is dissolved.

Under the terms of the bill, if a court decides that both parents will share parenting responsibilities equally, it will enter a possession order that provides for equal parenting time. The only exception is when a court determines that equal time is not in the best interest of the child. In these cases, they can choose to enter either:

  • A standard order; or
  • A separate order regarding custody that the court sees as in the child’s best interests.

Equal Parenting Order

If passed, the new bill would direct courts to enter an equal parenting order if they:

  • Appoint the parents as joint managing conservators; and
  • Determine that the order would be in the child’s interests.

When granting equal possession, courts will be required to comply with certain requirements, including that:

  • The schedule does not provide possession to a parent for an amount of days each year that is greater than the number of days offered to the other parent by greater than five; and
  • The schedule has to switch on an annual basis the parent who is provided possession for an amount of days that is more than the number of days offered to the other parent.

Judges must also provide parents with the chance to agree to a schedule that reflects equal possession as long as they decide that the schedule is in the best interest of the child.

Contact a Skilled Complex Child Custody Attorney Today

If you are considering a divorce and have questions about how parenting time is divided, please contact Powers and Kerr, PLLC to schedule a consultation with an experienced Leander child custody attorney.



Super Lawyers Super Lawyers TBLS AV Martindale
Avvo Top One Expert Top 10 Law Firm
Back to Top