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TX family lawyerIn high-conflict child custody disputes during a Texas divorce, the court may order a formal custody evaluation to help determine parenting arrangements that serve the child’s best interests. This in-depth assessment is conducted by a qualified, court-appointed professional evaluator, usually a psychologist or psychiatrist. Their investigation and recommendations carry significant weight in final custody determinations. With so much on the line, proper preparation is crucial for parents navigating a custody evaluation. A Texas attorney can help you along the way.

Understanding the Role of the Evaluator

Custody evaluators have extensive training in family dynamics, child development, and psychology. They act as neutral third parties, not as advocates or therapists. Their role is to conduct an unbiased investigation and provide expert recommendations to the court regarding custody and visitation arrangements that promote the child’s physical safety and psychological well-being, per Texas Family Code provisions.

Selecting the Right Evaluator

Texas family courts maintain rosters of qualified professionals who can serve as child custody evaluators. They have backgrounds in psychiatry, psychology, counseling, or social work. Attorneys from both sides will jointly select an evaluator from the court’s list. Look for relevant expertise with your family’s specific issues. An unbiased track record is also key.


Adoptive parent custodyIf you have adopted a stepchild, you may wonder if you can retain parental rights after divorcing the child’s biological parent. While Texas law considers you a legal parent after adoption, terms and conditions may vary.  Knowing how child custody arrangements work and your responsibilities as an adopted parent can help you make an informed choice during these complex cases.  


Understanding Your Parental Rights as an Adopted Stepparent  

Legally, stepparents do not have any parental rights under the Texas Family Law. However, you acquire the same rights as a biological parent if you legally adopt the stepchild. 


shutterstock_448217437-min.jpg Child custody or visitation pertains to the legal process determining how much time a child spends monthly with each parent after a divorce. Texas child custody laws can be complex and stressful to navigate. The final terms are determined by a judge, which can differ on a case-by-case basis. 

How Texas Describes Child Custody Issues

Conservatorship refers to the duties and rights of the parents when it comes to making important decisions for their children. This includes their schooling, medical decisions, religious decisions, etc. In this case, the parents can decide to allow one parent to make all the decisions (Sole Managing Conservatorship) or allow both parents to (Joint Managing Conservatorship). When the court is deciding the rights and duties of a parent, it takes several factors into account. 

Access or possession refers to physical child custody or when a parent can visit a child. They can opt for either standard or extended standard visitation schedules in Texas. But they can customize the schedules per their needs, or the court can do so based on the child's best interests. 


frisco child custody lawyer Child conservatorship guidelines in Texas refer to the legal framework that governs the rights and responsibilities of parents or guardians over the upbringing of their children. This includes decisions regarding the child's education, healthcare, religion, and welfare. 

The state of Texas assumes that both parents have an important role in their child's life, and it is in the child's best interest to have frequent and continuing contact with both parents. However, this assumption can be overcome with sufficient evidence. In some cases, it is better for only one parentto have authority over and responsibility for the child. 

Understanding Conservatorship in Texas

In Texas, child custody is referred to as "conservatorship." There are essentially two conservatorships. The first is “sole managing conservatorship," and the second is "joint managing conservatorship." 


frisco divorce lawyerFathers often feel that they are at a disadvantage when it comes to family law, especially during a divorce in Texas. They often worry about child custody and support, because they are unsure about their rights. If you are a father going through a divorce in Texas, or through a child custody dispute, consult a Frisco divorce lawyer who can protect your legal rights. That being said, the following blog is intended to help you better understand your legal rights in the Lone Star State.

Gender-Neutral Adjudication

Unlike in previous decades, courts are now required to adjudicate child custody in a gender-neutral manner. This means that mothers are no longer presumed to be the most suitable parent for custody, and fathers are recognized as equal partners during child custody cases or divorce in Texas.

Joint Custody First

Texas courts seek the best interest of the children during a divorce, which helps eliminate any gender bias. So instead of presuming mothers as caretakers and fathers are providers, the courts consider all things in the best interest of the children.

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