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In making this determination, the court will focus on the best interests of the child, without bias towards a parent's gender or marital status.
In determining the best interests of the minor child, the court will generally consider: 1) Whether either parent has a history of domestic violence against a child under 18, the party's spouse, or the parent of a child; 2) The circumstances of each parent and their ability to care for the child; 3) Each parents level of participation in child rearing activities before filing for custody; 4) The ability of the parents to cooperate regarding the child's welfare; 5) The ability of each parent to encourage an ongoing positive relationship with the other parent; 6) How close the parents will live to each other; 7) The child's preference, if he or she is older than 12 years old; 8) The physical, emotional, and developmental needs of the child; and 9) Any additional issues the court deems relevant.
Disclaimer: The Texas State Law Library is unable to give legal advice, legal opinions or any interpretation of the law.
It is strongly recommended that you contact an attorney for advice specific to your situation.
Unauthorized reproduction of this material is prohibited and violation of this notice will result in immediate legal action.
To read the complete online divorce statutes, please visit the official Texas Statutes Family Code.
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The court may vary from the guidelines if it determines the application of these guidelines would be inappropriate or unjust, based on any of these factors: 1) the child's age and needs; 2) the parents financial resources available for child support; 3) the ability of each parent to contribute to the financial support of the child; 4) the custody and visitation arrangements; 5) the obligated parent's net resources, as well as that parent's earning potential if he or she is willfully unemployed or underemployed; 6) child care costs due to work; 7) how much spousal support is being paid to or received by a parent; 9) the educational expenses for a child's post-secondary schooling; 10) whether either parent's employer, another person, or a business entity furnishes an automobile, housing, or other benefits; 11) any deductions from income or other reimbursement for personal services of the parents; 12) any provisions regarding health insurance and the payment of uncovered medical costs for the child; 13) extraordinary health care, educational, or other expenses of the parents or the child; 14) travel expenses for visitation; 15) any debts assumed by either parent; 16) cash flow (either positive or negative) resulting from any assets or property, including a business entities and investments; and 17) any other circumstances of the parents the court deems consistent with meeting the best interests of the child.
(Texas divorce laws, Family Code, CHAPTER 154) If you will be filing for a divorce in Texas, you can find additional divorce and child support resources at Texas Divorce Resources.
RESIDENCY REQUIREMENTS TO FILE FOR DIVORCE: Either the petitioner (the person filing for divorce) or respondent needs to be a resident of Texas for a minimum of 6 months before filing for a divorce.
In addition, the spouse filing for divorce needs to have resided, for at least 90 days, in the county where the divorce is filed before filing the petition.
All child support orders will include an income withholding order and a provision for medical support for the child.