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San Antonio Family Law Blog

Here are the custody issues you and your ex will fight about

Rearing a child is hugely rewarding -- but it isn't easy. Every parent struggles with the decisions they have to make. That struggle can be compounded, however, when a parent is divorced and you and your ex-spouse aren't on the same page about your parenting plans.

If you're in the process of developing a custody schedule and parenting plan with your ex, the best way to avoid a big problem down the line is to anticipate potential disagreements now -- before the situation turns critical (and gets heated).

How much do temporary custody orders matter?

iStock-1156224842.jpgIn Texas and other states alike, temporary orders are used to establish some operating terms while a couple goes through a divorce. They can allocate the use of the marital home and cars, establish support amounts and even determine who pays what share of the household bills until the divorce is settled.

Since these orders are just temporary pending a deeper exploration of the disputed issues, how much should you be concerned about the temporary orders that are put in place regarding custody of the children?

Don't stay stuck in a bad marriage

iStock-486417825.jpgYou know that your marriage isn't a happy one, but did you know that it's probably also damaging to your health?

Researchers say that being in a high-conflict relationship where disagreements over things like hobbies, the kids, the in-laws or the bills are common can actually hurt you physically, not just emotionally. While people in relatively agreeable unions tend to live longer and stay healthier than single people, the same is definitely not true for those who are unhappily wed.

Dealing with a 'Disneyland' parent

Disneyland.pngHave you ever heard the term "Disneyland dad" or "Disneyland mom?"

It's the phrase used to describe a non-custodial parent who sweeps in on their rare visitation weekends, scoops up the kids and showers them with gifts, suspends bedtimes, loads up on pizza and other goodies and basically turns the entire weekend into a party -- leaving you to be the disciplinarian who makes the kids go to bed on time, do their homework and eat their vegetables.

Will collaborative divorce help your child accept and adapt?

collaborative-divorce.pngThe breakup of a family unit is difficult for everyone, but perhaps most traumatic for younger, school-age children.

Traditional litigation can be especially stressful for children, but they fare much better when parents choose the less adversarial approach known as collaborative divorce.

Telling your kids about your divorce isn't going to be easy

kids.pngWhen it comes to their parents, kids expect a happily ever after. Unfortunately, things don't always work out that way. Life happens, and couples grow apart. Husbands and wives split up. The hardest part of it all is breaking the news to your kids. It's not easy telling them that your family is breaking apart and that mommy and daddy won't be living together anymore.

Children react differently to divorce, depending on their age, personality and their relationship with their parents. Kids often blame themselves for their parents splitting up. They often think that it's their fault. Children experience a variety of emotions from shock to sadness, anger, frustration, worry and fear upon learning about their parents' split.

How should you handle custody of your teen?

handle-custody.pngBeing a teen isn't easy. Their bodies and emotions are often in flux at this age. There are pressures put on them to do well in school and extracurricular activities and to prepare themselves for adulthood. All of this can be difficult for them to manage. If their parents announce that they're getting divorced, this may add another level of complexity to a teen's life, especially if they have to travel between their mom's and dad's homes.

There's no one-size-fits-all approach to devising a shared custody schedule. Parents must take into account their careers and preferences when negotiating how to split custody. What's perhaps most important, though, is that they maintain a semblance of normalcy for their teen.

How can child support orders be enforced in Texas?

child-support.pngWhat can you do if your child's other parent is lagging behind in their support payments?

Across the United States, there are billions of dollars in child support that go uncollected every year -- and Texas is not immune to the issue. While a child support order is a legal obligation, many paying parents fail to uphold that obligation either because they hit a rough financial patch or simply don't want to pay.

Looking for hidden assets in your divorce? Try South Dakota

hidden-assets.pngWhen you think about "hidden assets" and secret stockpiles of wealth that your spouse may be hiding (so that they can avoid splitting any of those assets with you in the divorce), your mind probably goes first to "offshore accounts." Maybe you even think about modern inventions, e.g., Bitcoin, that are uniquely designed to evade detection.

Have you considered asset trusts in South Dakota? A lawsuit involving a Texas billionaire has cast a spotlight on these trusts that make it easy for wealthy people to hide their income and property from everyone else -- including their own spouses. According to reports, South Dakota is actually becoming a "mini-Switzerland" when it comes to stockpiling assets from prying eyes.

Accolades & Achievements

Brandon, Karen, Michael, Megan Are Proud To Have Achieved The Following Legal Accolades for Exemplary Legal Service.

*Karen Marvel was recognized in Texas Monthly in 2008-2019 as a Texas Super Lawyer by Texas Super Lawyers (a Thomson Reuters service)

**Karen Marvel is Board Certified in Family Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization