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Texas complex custody attorney, Texas visitation lawsIn Texas, parents who are involved in divorce proceedings have the option of drafting a parenting plan that sets up a specific visitation schedule. However, when a couple is unable to come to an agreement, the court may choose to implement the standard visitation schedule created by statute, which guarantees parents visitation with their children on certain holidays. Determining when a parent has visitation with his or her child can be difficult and emotionally taxing, but by failing to come to an agreement outside of court, parents largely give up their control over the terms of the custody arrangement, which can lead to an unsatisfactory result for all parties. If you are considering a divorce and have questions or concerns about visitation on holidays, it is important to obtain the advice of an experienced child custody attorney who can help you draft a parenting plan that is in your child’s best interest.

Thanksgiving and Christmas Vacations

Usually, visitation schedules depend partly on the distance between the parents’ residences. However, in court-ordered custody arrangements, possession on certain holidays is predetermined, regardless of distance, unless a child’s best interest dictates otherwise. For instance, non-custodial parents are granted access to their child during the Christmas holidays:


When it comes to child support calculation, Texas is one of only several percentage-of-income states. Non-custodial parents pay a set percentage of their net income on a sliding scale according to the number of children before the court.

Nearly all other jurisdictions use an income share model. It attempts to give the children the same standard of living they would have enjoyed if the parents had remained married, by considering the income of both parents as well as the amount of parenting time of each party. Although this model may be somewhat more equitable – for example, it avoids the unusual result of an unemployed non-custodial parent paying child support to a wealthy custodial parent – the percentage-of-income model is easier to apply and leads to more predictable results.

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