Custody in a Time of Crisis: Custody and COVID-19 in Texas

If you think about all the different times in our lives, we have heard the word crisis being used, this time period of the coronavirus pandemic is the first actual crisis that many of us have ever lived through. A circumstance where our health, economic wherewithal and the structure of our society has been placed in serious harm’s way I would define a crisis. Another key element of a crisis is a situation that we don’t have a lot of control over. Yes, we can all do our part to minimize interaction with others where mass do things about sort, but the reality is that path of this virus this one that we don’t know how to chart accurately right now. Circumstance where your health is at risk and we don’t know when the virus pizza on our lives seems to be the very definition of a crisis.

Fortunately, really is even beings are very adaptable. we wouldn’t have made it this far if we didn’t know how to adapt with changing circumstances. At the beginning of the crisis we saw that governments established blanket stay at home orders like mandated all of us, other than the most essential people in the workplace, to stay home and let the spread of virus. I think it will be some time before we actually know how effective these stand on borders work. It seems like every couple weeks the government will produce new guidelines and recommendations for people to follow that have little to nothing to do with the prior weeks. This isn’t a criticism, but it is more or less indication that we still have a lot to learn about the virus and how best to respond to it. 

How has this crisis impacted your work? The early signs of the economic impact of the virus show that if you work in a situation where you are interacting with people turn an hourly wage at the economic shut down as impacted you and people like you more than just there are large groups of people who are fortunate enough to be able to work from home . These remote workers OK waiting for activity wait their essential job tasks without having to venture into contact with other people. How long that can I made the case and whether or not it is ideal in them in the long term is anyone’s guess at this stage. 

How has this crisis impacted your mindset? have you been able to maintain a consistent during this time. Or has the crisis negatively impacted ability to remain upbeat and optimistic? A lot of people that I know follow the news very, very closely and their mood fluctuates based on total case counts, hospitalization rates and things of that nature. I’m a big sports fan so I tend to look at things in terms of winning and losing a game or in this case winning or losing the battle against a virus. I don’t know whether or not this is an effective or prudent way to do things but that’s just my default setting. I’ve noticed that I, as well as prone to checking out the statistics each day and in some ways allowed those statistics to impact my mood and outlook.

What about your marriage? Have you and your spouse locked arms during this time three in and presented a united  front of the virus in fear in order to benefit the lives of your children? If you don’t have children then are you and your spouse working together district in your household, save money and establish goals for yourselves in the coming year? While there is a viral pandemic ongoing, I think that we have all seen that the essentials as far as food, clothing and shelter are not going to be impacted to the extent that we previously believed. If you don’t believe me, go online to any of the real estate websites and check out how many homes in our area are pending for sale right now. You may feel like the walls are closing in on even at the world operating but the evidence that I see shows me that people are going about their lives, raising children and doing things like buying houses. 

One thing that I would recommend at this point working with your spouse to figure out what are some realistic goals for the rest of 2020. This blog post is going up on our website at just about the midpoint of this year. This gives us a unique opportunity to assess the goals that we have at the beginning of 2020 and to determine how well we have been able to attack and accomplish those goals. Assuming that your income has not been interrupted due to the crisis you may want to sit down and figure out how you can invest plan financially for another shutdown in the economy or any interruption to your wages. 

Finally, I think it is worthwhile to consider where you are in regard to your relationship with your kids. For all this stress, anxiety and uncertainty that we feel regarding this pandemic it is much worse and much more acute feelings that are children live with in regard to the virus. My own kids are very young still but even they hear about the coronaviruses from other kids at school and over here conversations that adults have. So, your kids likely have more knowledge about the virus than you would think in a less means to deal with in compartmentalize actual impact the virus is having. To them, the impact of the virus maybe more imaginary and threatening that it needs to be. 

How to handle custody issues in an ongoing family law case 

This brings me to the central topic of today’s blog post. I would like to spend some time discussing pal your family can handle difficult custody issues associated with in spite of this pandemic. It is never easy to have disputes with your spouse or ex-spouse regarding your children. Just like there is no good time for your air conditioner is not working there is no good time for family issues to be rearing their ugly heads. Add 2 those family issues nasty virus that is hanging around and you have a combustible situation on your hands if you do not prepare and plan properly. 

First, I would like to approach this issue from your perspective if you are in the middle of a divorce case. Divorce cases tend to touch on all areas of a person’s life. Not only is it divorce deal with dividing visitation time with your children, but it also has to do with finances and physically removing you or yourselves from your home. These are dramatic changes in anytime. Not to mention right now. 

The most pressing custody related matter in regard to a divorce case is figuring out which parent children will reside with primarily and how to divide up possession time between you and your spouse during the divorce. Odds are good that your post-divorce life or mirror possession time during the divorce. Right now, it is important to focus on establishing stability and consistency for your children so that they can begin to develop game routine. That routine will be changed this year for the next six or Seven weeks your child could send the benefit from knowing where here she is going to wake up on any given day. 

Even though this may sound like the least appealing thing in the world to you right now I recommend that you and you communicated possible about these issues. The family law courts in Harris County the surrounding counties are not closed completely but it is more difficult to obtain a hearing date in the event that you all need to have an issue addressed by a judge. Therefore, I recommend you all works please bear in balance Visitation schedules for you and your spouse. 

In most divorce cases one parent his name the primary conservator of the children. This means that that parent will be able to house the children on a full-time basis and receive child support. If you are able, you also discuss which parent is in the best position to be able to fulfill this obligation. Sometimes that question answered itself due to one parent having a work schedule that makes it very difficult to be present for the children at the drop of a hat. For example, if you work evenings or are constantly on an on-call basis at work then your schedule probably does not lend itself well towards being the primary conservator of your children. 

That does not mean you will not have any ability to be with your children on a consistent basis or that your children will end up spending considerably more time with your spouse during here. What it does mean is that you and your spouse need to be honest and go she ate well and communicate with one another to overcome any scheduling difficulties when it comes to hammering out a parenting plan. You and your spouse are in the best position to be able to negotiate through these issues. It takes you going to see a judge to help walking each through his problems the judge is much less likely to come up with a solution that suits both you and your spouse. 

Custody issues in a post-divorce world 

As we wrap up today, I’d like to spend some time discussing how custody issues may work after your divorce is completed. Just because your divorce is complete does not mean that it is certain that you and you and your custody agreement will hold serve until your children turn 18. It may be that these circumstances that we find ourselves in bring about changes in your lives that necessitate a trip back to family court.

This is where co-parenting comes into play. If you have been reading hard log since the beginning of the viral pandemic that you know that I have been discussing with you the merits in importance of co-parenting. Co-parenting in a situation where you and your child’s other parent work together in order to raise your child in a consistent and stable manner. Co-parenting is something that married people should do as well as divorced people. in my opinion it is even more important for divorced people to Co parent due to the fact that they are living apart and not as easily able to coordinate parenting efforts together. 

Communication is the name of the game when it comes to co-parenting. If the virus in our response to it ask created problems in your life or disrupted any agreement from your final degree of divorce, then you all need to talk through the issues an attempt to resolve them together as best you can. Again, nobody expects this pandemic to go on forever. At a certain point the courts in our area will open up fully and you will be able to obtain a hearing before judge much easier. Till then, it will be more difficult more time consuming and therefore more expensive a process. 

If you reach a point before you absolutely need to speak to a judge, then you should not hesitate to move towards doing so. However, I am willing to bet that you and ex-spouse are more capable then you believe at working together to resolve custody issues as a co-parenting team. 

Questions about family law issues during the coronavirus? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan 

if you have any questions about the material that you read today, or blog post please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Family law attorneys offer free of charge consultations over the phone, in person and via video. We take a great deal of pride in offering free of charge consultations and do so in order to be able to help inform and educate our community on various issues related to family law. Please contact us today to learn more about how our office can best serve you and your family. 

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