Q:Do I get to choose how much child support I pay because of my child custody case?
A:To an extent, you and your co-parent will be able to determine how much child support you are responsible for paying. Assuming that you are named the possessory conservator of your child then it is likely that you also must pay child support. Child support is largely a function of your net monthly income and the number of children before the court. Once you determine those figures you can work on calculating child support. The individual circumstances of your family and needs of your child will also play a role in this calculation.
Q:I live in Fort Bend County, but my spouse moved to another state. Can I still file for divorce here?
A:Yes. In Texas, the question of a court having jurisdiction over a family law case centers around residency of at least one spouse. First, you or your spouse must have resided in the county where you are filing for divorce for at least the past 90 days. Next, either of you must have been Texas residents for at least the prior six months. If you meet both qualifications then a Fort Bend County court would have jurisdiction over your case, and you could file for divorce here no matter where your spouse resides.
Q:I’ve heard that divorces are expensive. Is this true?
A:Divorces can get expensive for this is not true for everyone. The general rule of thumb to use in this situation is that the longer your divorce takes the more expensive it will be. So, a short divorce equals a relatively inexpensive divorce in most cases. Bear this in mind as you begin to consider your strategy for a case. The more willing you and your spouse are to work together to solve the problems in your divorce together the less you must be concerned with a long, drawn out divorce the requires intervention by a family court judge.
Q:What is the main alternative to a judge deciding the outcome in my child custody case?
A:Mediation is a great tool that every family attorney should utilize in helping folks who are going through family law cases. Mediation involves you and your co-parent taking the issues of your case to an experienced family law attorney or former judge who is acting as a mediator on behalf of you and your child. The mediator helps create solutions with you all to the issues in your case. By working together in this way, you can avoid going to a trial or temporary orders hearing- assuming that you reach a settlement on all the areas of your case.
Q:Do the family courts have a bias in favor of naming mothers are primary conservator?
A:If your child custody or divorce case makes it all the way to a trial, then a judge would look at the current situation in your family as far as who takes care of the children primarily. If it is the child’s mother who is the primary caretaker and always has been, then you have an uphill battle in front of you as far as proving that the best interest of the children is served with you as the primary conservator. This isn’t a preference or bias towards mothers- it is a preference for maintaining the status quo and consistency in the life of your child.