Experienced Dallas Divorce Attorney Handling Sole Custody Issues
While most divorces in Texas result in the parents involved being granted joint legal custody of any children of the marriage, and while joint legal custody is legally presumed to be in the best interests of a child Texas law understands that this is not always the case. In order for a parent to successfully petition for sole custody they must rebut this presumption by showing that for various reasons the other parent will not provide an appropriate environment for the child. Some factors that are taken into consideration by the Court when making this decision include things like:
- If there is any credible evidence of a pattern of past or present neglect or physical or sexual abuse by the parent against a child, the other parent, or a spouse of the parent.
- If there is any evidence of the intentional use of abusive physical force against the other parent or any minor that has been committed while the suit is in process or during the two years before the suit was filed.
- If there has been a commission of family violence by the parent.
- The parent’s fitness to care for a child.
- If the parent has a drug or alcohol problem.
- If the parent has a history of criminal activity.
- If the parent has not been a part of the child’s life during the marriage.
- If the parent’s sexual conduct renders them unfit to act as a parent.
- If there has been a history of extreme conflict between the parents regarding religious, educational, or medical values.
These are only some of the most egregious reasons why a court would grant sole custody to a parent, and there are a number of lesser issues that, in combination, may convince a court that the best interests of the child or children lie in a sole custody arrangement. Additionally there are some factors that the Court specifically cannot consider when making a custody decision:
- Marital Status (Marital stability, however, can be taken into consideration.)
- Religion, as long as there are no religious requirements to engage in harmful, immoral, or illegal activities.
Contact A Premier Dallas Family Law Attorney
Seeking sole custody of a child, in a divorce or through the modification of an existing custody order, is possible, but it can be difficult due to the accepted presumption under Texas law that a child’s best interest lies in a joint custody arrangement. At the Dallas Law Offices of Udeshi Clark and Associates, our compassionate team of experienced legal professionals have the knowledge and experience to successfully petition for the best interests of your children. Contact us online or call us at (469) 914-5564 to discuss your situation and learn about your options.