Fabio & Merrill

When a child requests a custody modification in Texas

In a Texas divorce, parents may have taken a number of factors into consideration when discussing the child custody arrangement. Even though they want what is best for their child, they may also have made some decisions during the negotiations based on what they wanted as parents. If the child does not agree with the arrangement, he or she may be able to do something about it.

The Texas Family Code states that the courts may review and honor custody modification requests from children 12 years old or older. By law, the discussion between the child and the judge takes place in the court chambers. Neither parent is included in this interview, which may help ensure that the request is not because of pressure from one parent or the other.

It may be that a judge would not agree that the reasons a child gives for the change would be of benefit to his or her mental, physical and emotional needs. The primary factor that courts consider is always the best interest of the child.

According to Texas statutes, the best interest of the child includes situations that may affect the relationship of the child with each parent. A judge must determine whether the requested change will ensure that the child continues to have enough time with each parent to maintain or develop a close and healthy parent-child bond. The outcome of the modification must also ensure that the new custody arrangements provide the child with a safe and stable home free of violence.

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