What to Know About Child Custody Before Going to Court


Child custody is undeniably one of the major issues debated on in the wake of a divorce. In divorces that involve children, child custody and conservatorship is an issue that always comes up. One of the most commonly discussed issues is where your child or children will reside after your divorce.



Where Your Child Will Reside After Your Divorce


Some people go through all the trouble of a divorce just to get the child or children away from their spouse. There could be issues with their spouse that they don’t want their child to be exposed to. It could also be that they are fighting too much and too often and they don’t want their child to witness it, hence, they go for a divorce. It’s a sad reality, but a reality nonetheless. A lot of people assume that the mother always gets the child after the divorce, but this is not really the case. Good news for fathers who are interested in having possession of the child after the divorce. Today’s blog post will provide you with essential knowledge about child custody and conservatorship before you go to any Texas Family law court.



Who Gets Primary Conservatorship



One of the main issues that need to be resolved in any child custody or conservatorship case is the primary residence of the child. This is usually resolved by either the agreement between the two parents or a decision from the judge after a trial. There is an old stereotype about the mother being the primary conservator – in other words having the primary custody of the child. While this is often the case, it is only because the mother usually wants to be the primary conservator and acted that way while the parents were still living together.


If you are the father and you want to have primary custody or conservatorship of your child, you have the right to fight for it. You can provide the court with a history of caring for the child as much as your ex-wife did to increase your chances. If during the marriage you’ve spent most of your time working and you basically did not spend much time with your child, don’t expect the court to award you with the primary conservatorship. You have to bring ample evidence that you can be the primary parent without the child getting neglected or left alone most of the time.



When Your Spouse Is Chosen to Be The Sole Managing Conservator

If during your divorce the court awarded the sole managing conservatorship to your spouse, it could be a huge blow to you. In most cases, the court will award joint managing conservatorship to both parents, where you can work together equally as co-parents. In joint managing conservatorship, you get equal parental and child custody rights and duties. However, Sole Managing Conservatorship is an entirely different thing. You won’t get to share parental rights and duties to the child due to a past behavior of either you or the other parent. One thing you ought to remember: if your spouse is awarded sole managing conservatorship, this doesn’t mean that your parental rights are terminated. It doesn’t mean that your parental relationship with your child will be cut off completely either.


The court always aims to encourage a continuous relationship between the parents and the child after the divorce. So, even if you are awarded a possessory conservatorship and your spouse the sole managing conservatorship, your possession and access to your child don’t have to suffer a huge impact.


There is a Standard Possession Order in Texas that outlines the schedule when you can have your child during weekends and during vacation periods.



Geographical Restrictions

If you are the parent who is named as the one who gets to decide the primary residence of your child after the trial, you’d probably be happy with this news. However, while it is indeed great news, it comes with certain limitations. You will likely be restricted regarding where you can live, in order to give the other parent the chance to live close enough to your child. Therefore, you cannot live wherever you want, and you need to choose a home that is within the scope of the geographical restrictions set by the court. Abiding by the court order will allow a stable and consistent home for your child despite your divorce.




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Mr. Hutton is a Divorce and Custody Lawyer based out of Round Rock, TX. His background is with child psychology at Arizona State University where he received a B.S. in 2006, and he continued this by working with the Children’s Right’s Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law where he received his J.D. in 2009. Throughout his practice, he has been a strong proponent of utilizing modern technology to improve his practice and the representation of his clients. He currently is the technology chair of CAFA of Travis County and is committed to improving and modernizing the practice of law in Texas. If you have any questions you can contact him at

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