WE ARE WORKING!
As the situation with COVID-19 continues to develop and evolve, the safety, health and well-being of our clients and our team is extremely important to us. We are watching for the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and international medical experts to learn how we can best manage our facility and our clients.
We would like to reassure you that The Law Office of Lisa A. Vance, P.C. will continue to be available to provide services to all of our clients.
Our lawyers and paralegals are working in the office and electronically, although most of us are working from home. Below is a list of FAQs regarding our response and commitment to you during COVID-19.
Can I even have a consultation with my lawyer remotely?
Yes, The Office of Lisa A. Vance, P.C. has a comprehensive remote working capability and all of our lawyers and paralegals are equipped to work securely from home.
Will my lawyer be available to answer questions and work on my case?
Yes, your legal matters will continue to receive our attention. You can email, call, or videoconference with your lawyer during this time.
We also have multiple videoconferencing options; please contact your attorney for the platform that works best for you
How are court hearings and appointments affected?
Court in Bexar County are now conducted by Zoom Please see our blog article Court via Zoom: It’s Actually, Really Court (and Here’s How It Works)
Can I consult with a lawyer about a new family law or divorce matter?
Yes, we have office staff working in house and remotely to ensure continuity in our business. For information about a family law or divorce matter, please call our office or complete the Request a Consultation Form.
Your family law matters remain our top concern and we are not going to permit this pandemic to take priority over your needs. We will remain confident, alert and prepared.
We wish you and your family well as we work through this difficult situation together.
With warm regards,
Lisa A Vance
Can child custody arrangements be changed in Texas?
The short answer is yes, you can modify child custody orders in Texas. For instance, if, as time passes, your custody arrangement with your ex is no longer ideal, the two of you can get together and come to a new agreement regarding custody. However, it is important to still go through the legal process of filing a petition and having the court sign off on the proposed change, otherwise you risk having an unenforceable agreement.
Alternatively, if you believe custody needs to be modified, but your ex doesn’t agree, you can still ask the court for a modification, although you must be able to prove certain factors before a court will grant such a request.
Modifying custody when the parents can’t agree
Texas law specifically outlines when your child custody arrangement – also known as conservatorship – can be modified by the court. First, you must be able to show that you, your child or the child’s other parent has experienced a material and substantial change in circumstances. Many situations may constitute a sufficient change in circumstances, including when:
- Your ex wants to move/relocate with your child, or your child experiences any change in his or her home surroundings
- Your child is mistreated by the other parent or a stepparent
- Your ex becomes an improper person to exercise custody
- Your ex tries to alienate your child against you or otherwise attempts to poison his or her mind
- Your ex gets remarried
However, it is crucial to keep in mind that this is not a complete list of circumstances that may warrant a custody modification, nor do these situations assure a modification will be granted. After all, Texas courts are not confined to a set of definite or rigid guidelines when making determinations regarding changes in custody, but instead must make their decisions based on an analysis of the facts specific to each request.
If a sufficient change in circumstances does not exist, a court will likely deny a child custody modification. Although, it is worth mentioning that there are two other situations – in addition to a change in circumstances – in which a Texas court may entertain a modification request:
- When a child over the age of 12 has expressed a preference between his or her parents
- When a custodial parent has voluntarily surrendered possession or otherwise abandoned the child for at least six months
Modification requests must be in the child’s best interests
Even if you are able to show a substantial change in circumstances – or one of the other situations mentioned above – you must still be able to prove that your proposed custody change in your child’s best interests. In fact, Texas law expressly states that the best interests of the child are the primary consideration in any child custody case.
Given all of the intricate laws and rules associated with child custody modification in Texas, it is always best to seek the legal guidance of an experienced attorney if you have any questions. A skilled attorney can guide you through this complex process and carefully explain your rights and options.