Texas has two different types of custody arrangements available between divorcing parents: joint managing conservatorship and sole managing conservatorship. These two categories are extremely similar to standard joint custody arrangements and sole custody arrangements, with a joint managing conservatorship seeing parents share in making important decisions such as health care and religious upbringing, and a sole managing conservatorship ensuring that only one parent makes such decision. However, while it can be helpful to understand these different arrangements, it is perhaps more important to understand the factors that go into determining them.
Because many modern studies have proven that having both parents involved in their upbringing is best for children, courts tend to offer joint managing conservatorships unless there is a significant reason not to. Reasons not to offer joint conservatorship tend to include things like abuse or neglect of the child by one parent, or a general level of unfitness for parenting. It is by demonstrating that you qualify as a good parent in these factors that you will have the best chance of getting the custody arrangement with your child that you deserve.
The most important thing to the courts is doing what is best for the child. This means that courts will look favorably upon parents who have a demonstrated history of spending time with their children in healthy ways. This obviously includes not abusing or neglecting the child, but also not letting your relationships with your child be overshadowed by your dependence on a foreign substance, for example.
A strong understanding of these factors and the ability to prove that you satisfy them can be the difference between being heavily involved in your child's life and rarely seeing your child at all. If you are going through a divorce in Texas, and you are concerned about your custodial rights, visit our webpage to learn how we can help you make a stronger case to get the custody that you deserve.