Imagine that you and your spouse have a child, and for many years your family lives happily. But then something changes one day, and you and your spouse feel more stressed out and get into more arguments with one another. As the months pass, your marriage disintegrates, and you and your spouse decide that it is time to get a divorce.
In our last post, we began speaking about the important issue of interstate child custody litigation, and how Texas courts determine where these disputes are handled. The issue is an important one, given that different states have different approaches to child custody and custody disputes can turn out differently depending on where a couple's case is handled. As we mentioned, the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) provides the primary guidance for courts in these cases.
Increased relocation to Texas in recent years has had a number of local effects, from increasing activity in the real estate market to stimulating the economy. According to a recent article in Texas Lawyer, another effect of increased migration to Texas is that there are more cases dealing with the issue of how to handle situations where competing child custody orders are in place.
If you and your former spouse had children together, you will always be "family" in some sense of the word. You are tied together by your child's very existence. How you choose to treat that reality is ultimately up to you. If your former spouse is abusive or unfit, you may benefit from speaking with an attorney about modifying your custody arrangements in order to eliminate or seriously limit his or her contact with your child. In most cases however, your former spouse will remain in your life as long as your child chooses to remain in his or her life.
Texas couples who are divorcing may be facing complex asset division, and the same is true of the founder of hedge fund firm Citadel LLC. Kenneth Griffin has filed for divorce from his wife of 11 years. Citing "irreconcilable differences" as the reason for their split, the filing stated the couple had been separated for a year. However, the attorney for Anne Dias Griffin says that she was not given timely notice of the filing. Kenneth Griffin has also asked for joint custody of the couple's three children.
A Texas district judge has decided against allowing the state to intervene in a child custody matter involving a same-sex couple. The Texas Attorney General's office requested the opportunity to intervene due to the state's interest in defending the same-sex marriage ban.
The mother of two boys died in 2012. The two boys had been living in Texas but then moved out-of-state with their mother when she divorced their father.
One man recalls the experiences he had to endure while being the center of a child custody dispute. This individual's own marriage ended in 2010, but he was determined to make life easier for his children than his parent's divorce had been upon him. He states that he always tries to be there for the important moments in his daughter's life. His daughter is now living with his mother while his son is living with him.
Perhaps the most difficult cases for family law judges to hear are those that concern plans of one parent moving away with the children. The plans of the parent to move away with the children will especially complicate circumstances for the non-custodial parent. These parents may find it much more difficult to participate with the children on a daily basis.
The push in many states when it comes to child custody disputes is towards a more equal shared custody arrangement. In Texas as in every other state, the best interest of the child should be a vital consideration when child custody determinations are made. However, there is considerable disagreement concerning what sort of custody arrangement would meet this goal.