While male and female attorneys are equally equipped to handle family law matters, some people may feel more comfortable discussing difficult personal issues with professionals of the same sex. Men considering filing for divorce may have gender-specific questions on topics like fathers’ custody rights that they need to be answered in order to hire the right divorce attorney for their needs. A male attorney may be able to better assist in connecting with a father and understanding his wants and needs during a custody battle, which makes the father’s legal team more effective advocates on his behalf.
Advocating for Father’s Rights
Historically, Texas family courts tend to favor mothers when it comes to granting child custody rights to parents seeking a divorce or parents who share a child but are not married. With the appropriate legal team, fathers can and should be granted custody of a child or children, including sole custody in the right circumstances. Fathers and mothers have equal rights and should be educated on their child custody rights. In fact, The Equal Law Act of 1973, which prohibited discrimination on the basis of sex, declares that decisions such as child custody cannot be made on the basis of sex.
During any divorce involving a child or children, both parents should actively discuss custody and the wellbeing of the child or children involved. The rare couples that are able to come to mutual agreements regarding child custody may avoid some of the contentiousness of the divorce process, as well as minimize the impact divorce can have on a child. Our male attorneys experienced with child custody and divorce can provide guidance on what type of custody works best for fathers in each family’s unique situation.
Child Custody Laws in Texas
Typically, Texas courts favor granting joint custody in divorce cases so parents can maintain equal relationships with their children. Joint custody is not the only child custody option available in Texas, however, and we help fathers pursue other options if they feel joint custody is not the best interest of their child or children. In extreme cases of the mother having issues with substance abuse, physical or mental abuse, or other unfit behavior, an experienced family law attorney will advocate for sole custody for the father.
Joint custody in Texas provides custody rights to both mother and father. While joint custody allows both parents to weigh in on important matters concerning a child, it does not divide time equally among them. In most joint custody arrangements, the mother or father will be granted physical custody of the child or children and the other parent will maintain visitation rights. The parent with physical custody can seek out and receive child support paid by the other parent.
In a joint custody arrangement, both parents are given equal rights concerning the wellbeing of the child or children with regard to:
- Medical decisions
- Educational decisions
- Legal decisions
Shared custody is similar to joint custody in that it grants both parents legal rights; however, shared custody differs in that the child or children involved maintain two physical home addresses where they will spend 50% of the year equally between both parents.
Sole custody means full custody is granted to one parent, usually only in severe circumstances. It is possible for a father to receive sole custody as long as his legal team proves the wellbeing of their child is in danger if they remain in the custody or guardianship of their mother/other parent. Typically in these cases, the parent seeking sole custody is dealing with another parent who exhibits dangerous behavior such as substance abuse, criminal activity, as well as domestic abuse, among others.
Texas Child Custody Attorneys
Fathers cherish time spent with their children just as much as mothers do, and their legal representation should advocate for the full extent of their parental rights. A father meeting with divorce attorneys may feel less vulnerable opening up to a fellow father regarding his concerns and wishes for the divorce process. When a father not only has stellar legal representation but also works with a team invested in Texas paternal rights, knowing they’re in the right hands can minimize stress.
The attorneys at Terry & Roberts have successfully resolved hundreds of Brazoria County divorce and child custody cases; and, we ensure fathers’ rights will not be pushed to the wayside during custody hearings. If you are going through a divorce involving minor children, or you are an unmarried parent seeking to establish paternity, you need the assistance of experienced family law attorneys. Contact Terry & Roberts today, so our attorneys can petition the court for fair custody and visitation schedules that protect your parental rights.