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What factors help decide custody matters?

In Texas, child custody is referred to as a conservatorship. Conservatorships are created and curated with a child’s best interest in mind, and the state laws also aim to ensure this.

In order to serve a child’s best interest, FindLaw states that there are a number of factors that a court will look at in order to decide matters like visitation schedules and parenting plans. Courts will always look at proposed schedules and plans through the lens of what might be best for the child.

Additionally, it is important to note that if parents don't submit their own plans, the court will determine custody matters themselves using what information they already have.

To help make their decisions, the court will look at the following things:

  • If both parents will readily cooperate with each other and the court
  • Whether or not one parent is attempting to keep their child from contacting their other parent
  • Whether both parents can communicate efficiently and prioritize the child's best interest
  • If joint custody is the most beneficial option for the child's mental, emotional and physical well-being
  • The location of each parent's individual dwelling from each other
  • The amount each parent contributed to the child's upbringing before the divorce

Of course, if the child is old enough to do so, the court will also usually ask them for their opinion and take that into consideration as well.

If you are currently involved in a child custody case and want to learn more about what goes into a court’s decisions, consider talking to an attorney who specializes in family law.

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