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What You Should Know About Father’s Rights in Texas

 Posted on January 10, 2024 in Fathers' Rights

TX family lawyerOver recent decades, Texas legislation has reflected growing equality between parental rights regardless of gender. However, in practice, fathers still face bias risks and unique hurdles around establishing and retaining relationships with children through separation or divorce. Understanding key factors of the law and navigating the tricky timeline with a Texas child custody attorney can help fathers best protect their rights and access.

No Explicit Custody Preference Between Parents

Long gone are outdated formal assumptions in Texas law granting mothers inherent preference over fathers as “naturally better caregivers” for deciding custody. The overarching legal standard governing decisions today aims to determine parenting plans and custody arrangements purely per children’s best developmental interests, regardless of gender.

But while rules have changed, lingering real-world biases still pose challenges. Despite equal consideration principles, fathers often must actively demonstrate committed involvement in meeting children’s needs to counter unjust damage from stereotypes. Comprehensive documentation of hands-on parenting track records helps here, including evidence of:

  • Daily time invested directly in child developmental needs
  • Close emotional relationships and bonding
  • Upholding routines, participation in activities
  • Joint commitment to maintaining stability

Temporary Orders Importance

Initially, in contested divorces, courts issue temporary orders governing crucial factors like custody, visitation schedules, and child support obligations during case pendency before final rulings. Compliance and demonstrating responsible co-parenting during this period can be vital, whereas failure risks severely harming a father’s position.

Fathers should urgently pursue getting clear temporary visitation rights with children in writing. Never assume fairness without orders in place early, as the status quo still often favors mothers gaining more residential time by default. Do not allow that to occur without legal pushback.

Right to 50/50 Custody Consideration

Texas family code currently mandates that upon request of either parent, judges must explain the specific reasons if ultimately not granting approximately 50/50 custody time-sharing or an otherwise equal joint conservatorship. This reflects the posture of equality. Fathers should expressly seek such an arrangement upfront, barring unusual mitigating factors. Demanding reasoning forces courts to justify any denial of expansive rights.

Contact a Bexar County, TX, Child Custody Lawyer

Fathers navigating separation or divorce undeniably still face risks of outdated biases influencing rulings unfairly limiting relationships with children. Working with a San Antonio, TX,  child custody attorney well-versed in father’s rights strategies can help. It is ideal to have legal representation on your side and not to go through this alone. Call Brandon Wong & Associates at 210-201-3832 for a free consultation.

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