You won’t find any single issue in a divorce case more serious, emotionally charged, and takes higher attention of a family court other than child custody decision. Fighting among couples to obtain sole custody right over the child is a very common scene in marital split-up and even after separation, disagreements on various factors in due course bring almost 60% of ex-spouses to consult child custody lawyer in Houston to deal with breach of agreement, recoup custody, access visitation right, change custody and so on.
Notably, custody arrangement takes a significant part of a divorce agreement, and in the role of a legal representative, a custody lawyer helps resolve the type of responsibilities each parent should play; like with whom the child will reside on a daily basis, who will take care of major decisions concerning the child’s education, health, future career, etc. and accordingly the law makes them legally bound to take care of those responsibilities. Amid various roles they play, the major five are stated below:
Determine Child Custody
Gone are those days when typically mother of the child used to get custody right over the child. Almost all state family law jurisdictions in the US, now follow the standard of focusing on ‘best interest of the child’ while executing guardianship rights to spouses involved. With consideration of the socioeconomic changes, degrading values and fast lifestyle of spouses, child custody lawyer in Houston as well as the court considers dozens of factors in order to settle on where the child should inhibit as their primary home and who will take vital decisions about the child’s educational, healthcare, religious, and career-related decisions etc.
Major factors are taken into account
• The physical and mental health conditions of spouses;
• History of brutality by either of parents;
• Child-parent relationship;
• The residential environment of each parent;
• Impact of potential changes on the child’s future life;
• Expert recommendation;
• Child’s preference (often granted in some states over age 13);
Determining Child Support
Child support is a major part of custody agreements that clarify the legal compulsion of the non-custodial parent to pay the custodian part a sum of financial support toward the rearing of the child. Once custody right is decided, the child custody lawyer work in combination with parents to determine the support amount which commonly incorporates expenses against the child’s day to day care, education, health insurance, etc. Importantly, parents should note that child support money is also subject to change as per need and custodial parent can appeal for the same.
Secondly, the obligation of paying child support is considered independent and must for non-custodial partners. And thereby, even if the ‘obligatory’ part generally awarded with visitation right, wrongfully ignores visitation, support money must be paid as per schedule, violation of which can lead a contempt of court order and ends with serious consequence. The lawyer calculates the child support money based on obligatory parents income and the family’s standard of living.
Preparing the Custody Agreement
A dependable child custody lawyer in Houston listens to all concerns regarding child custody and explains the possible option out of joint custody, sole physical custody, legal custody, etc. Even though shared or joint custody is preferred in family court that encourages both parents to work mutually for the optimal interest of the child and equally develops a healthy bond among the child and parents. However, such arrangement can be altered depending on the factors stated above. The custody arrangement including visitation right of the non-custodian parent and details of child support is documented by the lawyer for courts final approval.
Due to any ground, if you’re considered unfit for having guardianship right, never get upset considering it’s your lifetime defeat. With a seasoned child custody lawyer in Houston, you can get back custody by overcoming your deficient points and showing off better performance as suggested by the lawyer. Similarity, on the occurrence of considerable changes in the setting in future, a child custody lawyer in Houston can help you get custody modification and defend your child. Some of these factors may include your ex- gets married, leaves the state jurisdiction, commits child abuse, or drug abuse, etc.
Help Avoid Costly Mistakes
Almost every spouse fights for having sole custody with a perception that they’re ideally the ‘best’ for rearing the child. The attitude not only drives them to take vindictive steps such as involving the child into the clash, denying to cooperate, commit domestic violence, use bullying as a weapon, etc that eventually deprives them from having their lawful right. A seasoned child custody lawyer well-familiar about such events educates and alerts parents on the dos and don’ts in the courtroom, social life and home to enjoy sole/share custody.