In Texas, when determining child custody, the court’s primary consideration is the best interest of the child. The court will consider a variety of factors when determining the best interest of the child, which include, but not limited to:
- The child’s physical, emotional, and psychological well-being
- The child’s needs, including their need for a stable, loving, and safe environment
- The child’s relationship with each parent and other family members
- The ability of each parent to provide for the child’s physical, emotional, and financial needs
- The parents’ ability to communicate and co-parent effectively
- The parents’ ability to provide a safe and stable home for the child
- The child’s wishes, if the child is of sufficient age and maturity
- Any history of family violence or child abuse
- Any other factors that the court finds relevant to the child’s best interests.
It’s important to note that Texas law presumes that it is in the child’s best interest to have frequent and continuing contact with both parents, unless there is evidence of endangerment or other factors that would make this not in the child’s best interest.
The court may also order a Child custody evaluation which is performed by a neutral third-party professional, such as a licensed therapist, psychologist or social worker. They will assess the family dynamics, and make recommendations for custody and possession schedule to the court.
It’s also worth noting that the court may also award joint managing conservatorship which allows both parents to share the rights and responsibilities of raising the child, but one parent will have the primary possession of the child, unless the court finds that it would not be in the child’s best interest.
If you have additional questions about custody or need to hire a custody lawyer, call us at (817) 900-2823.