The Houston Family Law Blog

Child Custody in Houston

At the time of a divorce, the parents are required to come up with a plan that provides for where the children will live, how they will be raised, and how they will be provided for. Unless the parents can fashion a Child Custody arrangement on their own or during mediation, a Texas family law court will use a “best interests of the child” approach to make the determination about a child’s schedule.

There are different types of child custody arrangements. Many couples end up with joint legal custody, with one parent serving as the “custodial” parent and the other deemed the “non-custodial” parent, who is responsible for paying child support and sees the child on a scheduled basis.

Courts also consider single custody, where only one parent is the legal and physical custodian -- although courts generally favor keeping both parents involved. It is advisable to retain a competent Houston Family Law attorney for any child custody matter.

Recently in Child Custody Category

Minors Who Want Out: 3 Legal Options

Often 16- and 17-year-olds have a bit of trouble not wanting to throttle their parents or burst into tears from living under the same roof. (They wouldn't even let you go to Numbers the other night, gawd!)

If waiting for the hormones to simmer down is off the table, Houston-area minors may want to consider these three options to gain some autonomy:

When Couples Divorce, Who Makes Decisions for the Child?

A 6-year-old, who attends Saint Joseph’s Grade School in Toms River, New Jersey, is in serious condition after being accidentally shot in the head by his 4-year-old neighbor. The counseling services being offered at the Catholic school to help students cope with the incident bring to mind the myriad of long-term decisions that parents must make to raise a child.

In the divorce context, it raises the question of who has a say in key aspects of the child’s welfare, including schooling and religion. In fact, it is the parent who has legal custody, not just physical custody, who makes these important decisions about the upbringing of a child.

Bethenny Frankel Divorcing and Asking for Child Support

Last week, it was just a rumor. Now, divorce is a reality for reality TV personality Bethenny Frankel.

Frankel and her husband Jason Hoppy are divorcing, reports The New York Post. Although Frankel hasn't spoken out about her divorce yet, rumors have run rampant since her separation nearly a month ago.

The Frankel-Hoppy divorce seems anything but amicable, if early reports are true. For starters, Frankel is apparently asking for primary custody of the couple's 2-year-old daughter Bryn.

And she is actually asking Hoppy for child support, despite the fact that she made more than $12 million last year.

Kim and Kanye Announce Baby, But Kim and Kris Still Married

Earlier this week, we heard the news that Kim Kardashian was carrying Kanye West's baby. But what's more interesting is that the pregnant reality star is still technically married to someone else.

Kanye made the announcement during a performance in Atlantic City on Sunday, when he asked the audience to congratulate his "baby mama," reports The Spin. Kardashian went on to confirm the statement on her website.

What isn't confirmed, however, is her divorce from Kris Humphries.

Sesame Street Tackles Thorny Issue of Divorce

Beloved children's TV show "Sesame Street" is tackling the complex issue of divorce.

With millions of children watching the television show daily, some would believe that the move makes sense. Others, however, feel the need to protect children from the more complex realities of life.

For their first try, "Sesame Street" brought the topic home in a very gentle way, casting Snuffy the Suffleupagus as the child going through the divorce of his parents, writes Time magazine.

Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubry Reach 'Amicable' Agreement

Halle Berry's bizarre custody saga has finally come to a close. For now.

A peaceful end, thankfully, as Gabriel Aubry and Halle Berry have come to a mutual agreement. According to The Montreal Gazette, the dueling duo has reached an "amicable" arrangement regarding the custody of their daughter, 4-year-old Nahla.

Halle Berry's Daughter Gets Court Appointed Counsel

The Halle Berry custody battle couldn’t get any weirder, could it?

Last week, Berry’s ex-boyfriend, Gabriel Aubry, showed up at her door in Hollywood Hills. He was purportedly thrashed by Berry’s present beau, Oliver Martinez, reports Fox News.

Aubry suffered a fractured rib and several bruises to the face. His injuries required stitches. But in the end, Aubry, not Martinez, was arrested, on suspicion of battery, reports Fox.

'Baby Moses Law' Offers Safe Haven for Abandoned Newborns

It's always surprising to many parents that some mothers abandon their infants. Unfortunately, it was happening with enough frequency, and with fatal results, that the Texas legislature in 1999 passed the "Baby Moses Law" to provide an option to those who felt the need to abandon their newborns.

The law allows for a parent to leave a child at a fire station, hospital, or other emergency caregiver up to 60 days after the child's birth.

So how exactly does the law work?

Houston Parents Charged After Baby Drowns in Bathtub

Two Houston parents are facing homicide charges after their infant son drowned in an accident at their home.

Roderick Cole had placed his two children, a 2-year-old and an 8-month-old, in a bathtub and started filling it with water. Roderick then helped his wife Gabrielle take some clothes to her car in the driveway where the two began to argue, according to the Houston Chronicle. When Roderick returned to the bathroom seven to 10 minutes later, he found the 8-month-old face-down in the tub. The infant was not breathing.

The baby was given CPR and rushed to a hospital, but died two days later, according to the Chronicle. Would the baby have been taken away from his parents had he survived?

Kelly Rutherford's Kids to Split Time with Their Father in France

Joint custody generally is not such a big deal when a couple splits. It just means that the parents will have to see one another when the kids go from one parent to the other. But what if the other parent is in another state, or even another country?

This is what's happened to "Gossip Girl" star Kelly Rutherford. A court has ruled that her ex-husband Daniel Gersch can have joint custody of their 3- and 5-year-old children, keeping them 50% of the time in France where he lives, according to TMZ. The judge said that Rutherford's schedule was flexible enough that she could find the time to go visit her kids while they are in France.

What goes into a court's decision to allow joint custody when one parent is out of state?