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Are Divorce Rates and Custody Issues in Texas linked to COVID-19?

The collateral damage associated with the coronavirus is certainly a trendy topic to discuss right now. My perception of the situation is that towards the beginning of the pandemic most of us were mainly concerned with the health consequences of the virus. How deadly was it? How did it spread? How easily was it spread? How could we best protect our children and ourselves from catching the virus these are all valid questions to ask and in large part I think they haven't answered so far based on the information available to us. 

Once we have answered these questions for the time being it isn't as if we stopped asking questions. At that point we look to secondary impacts of the virus beyond the immediate concerns regarding our health. How has the medical community responded to the virus? What are the hospitals looking like these days? I think the main impetus for the stay at home orders that we experienced early on in the pandemic were due to concerns over the hospital beds filling up with coronavirus patients thus overwhelming power emergency rooms and hospitals.  When you are considering the immediate consequences of a virus this probably isn't one that would come to your mind right off the top of your head. 

The next area in our lives that most people are concerned with after health related to the coronavirus would be the strength of our economy and our employment circumstances in relation to the virus. It is undeniable that many people are proud save the virus and even more unfortunate that some of the men lost their lives. It is sobering to think about all the things that impacted by this virus health consequences associated with it. Statistically, however, most families have not been impacted by the virus in many of us don't know this person who has gotten the coronavirus. This means that for those flows it may be that their personal economic situation related to the shutdowns is the most important issue related to the virus.

For my experience, I think people are out there most optimistic when their jobs are stable, and they are able to get their heads above water financially. Having to make payments each month on a car loan, a mortgage and student loans is always difficult. However, it is more difficult you are unsure about this stability of your job. Should you be saving money for ring day continuing to make payments on debt and other necessities in your life? This uncertainty can lead to a great deal of pessimism and fear. 

From what I have personally experienced in my life and from what I have seen in other people's lives someone is fearful that person tends to make bad decisions as a result. A fearful person is person is not a logical or objective person from there the decisions that this person makes may not be based in reality but rather based on specific, temporary circumstances I have filled the person with fear. Whether or not this describes you is not critical to his podcast. However, if you are experiencing a great deal of uncertainty in your life then I think it is worthwhile for you to pay attention to the information I share with you today. 

What causes family law issues to arise in your household? 

This is the important question that we need to ask yourself right now. In an otherwise solid, stable household what could suddenly bring that to an end and cause dramatic shifts in the framework of your family switch off obviously it does not take a pandemic to bring about problems in a family that lead folks to filing family lawsuits against one another. We see divorces filed there all times of the year variety of reasons. For as many people as file for divorce, there are just as many specific reasons why the person who filed chose to do so. 

Even in normal times family law attorneys see an increase in the number of people who filed for divorce during certain times of the year. For instance, power the Holidays see a dip in the divorce rate because people are either busying themselves with activities associated with the Holidays or are doing the best to give, you're her one last shot at working out. Typically, then, January is a busy time of year for family law attorneys as those same people are moving towards divorce after the Holidays conclude. 

Tough economic times also see increases in the rate of divorce filings. As I mentioned a moment ago if you have a steady job and you have no problems paying your bills then you are less likely to allow problems in your marriage to impact you. If your job or to be taken away from you due to a pandemic, then the problems you experience on a personal financial level may become much worse for you and your family if marital problems that are also ongoing. 

If you are accustomed to be the provider for your family from a financial perspective and that ability was taken away from you it may cause you to look at yourself in a whole new light. You may not be happy person look at in here due to yourself esteem being tide 2 your ability to provide financially. This is not necessarily a bad thing here I think many of us are in this boat and we feel a sense of rocks if we were to lose a job especially under circumstances that we could not control. 

Consider, also, the dynamic in your house if you, your spouse, or one of your children to get sick from the coronavirus or any other illness. Sickness in the family tends to create a great deal of stress, understandably. We have already discussed how financial issues can contribute to rising rates of family law cases. Well, a health scare in the family creates a circumstance where not only is there economic uncertainty but there is also uncertainty as to the well-being of your family. Even minor problems within your marriage can be exacerbated during times like these. 

Why custody cases may become more prevalent during the coronavirus pandemic

For those of you living a post-divorce life where you are settling into a routine of visitation exchanges, child support payments and the like the pandemic may also make life much more difficult for you in this regard. Consider how problems may arise if you are unable to pay child support. The primary reason, from my experience, or someone not paying child support is not due to negligence or an unwillingness to contribute to the well-being of your child. Most people failed to make child support payments because they simply are not able to come up with the money on a monthly basis. 

In a time of economic uncertainty , where your working hours may have been cut , of furlough may have been pushed upon you or your job may have been eliminated altogether it is not difficult to imagine circumstances where you may run into issues regarding how to pay child support. This is an especially sticky situation because if your Co parent relies on your child support to pay bills or perform other essential duties their own economic circumstances may not be much better than yours right now. When you combine 2 worried people you have less economic wherewithal than they did three months ago you have a situation where a child support enforcement case may be much more likely to be filed. 

What about a situation where you are being denied possession of your child over concerns he or she may get sick with you?

Consider, also, what happened in a situation where your ex-spouse refused to allow you Visitation with your children over concerns that your child may get sick if he or she were to leave their primary household. You may be the cleanest most conscientious parent in the world but if your ex-spouse has a belief that your child is going to get sick if he or she were to step outside the house then there is really nothing you can do to dissuade him or her from that position. 

It doesn't make it right for him or her to deny you visitation, however. If you have been denied Visitation time with your child do too your ex-spouse’s unfounded beliefs that you are going to do something that leads your child to getting sick, then you have a potential child custody situation on your hands. Keep in mind that even if your ex-spouse is violating your parenting plan you cannot simply call the police and ask them to help you deal with the situation. The end result is that an enforcement case may need to be filed against your ex-spouse.

Does this all mean that you are more likely to find yourself in a family law case right now?

Of course, there is no way to say for certain whether or not you are headed towards a family law case right now more than he would have been during any other time period. There are so many specific circumstances that will impact you and your family as you move towards or away from a family law case. Your willingness to work together with your Co parent entire patience with him or her is especially important right now. If you are a person considering a divorce you will know good and well whether or not your spouse is willing to attend counseling or to work on your issues given that you both are at home more now than ever before. 

What I can tell you is that stressful times typically bring about reactions that do not necessarily exhibit your true feelings. When you are patience is at its end and you feel like the walls are literally closing in on you may choose to make a decision that goes against your better instincts and against the best interests of you and your family. Ultimately you are the person who will determine whether or not you file for a family law case. Sometimes the filing of the case was inevitable, regardless of whether or not the pandemic occurred. I can also see that these stressful times have brought about an increase and people being willing to at least discuss the filing of a family law case. 

That is not to say that the filing of a case is inevitable if you are feeling stressed out and have tried to work out problems with your Co parent or spouse. You can always attempt to reconcile with him or her using a therapist or counselor. Most of these professionals are open for business as we head into the middle of summer. Hopefully now you and your spouse had become acclimated to new Visitation protocols with your child and disagreements can be settled between the two of you amicably. If you can act more flexibly in regard to Visitation with your child, then I think you can decrease the likelihood of a child custody case occurring during the pandemic. 

While the laws in the books regarding child custody and divorce cases have not changed since the beginning of the pandemic the process of beginning one may have become more cumbersome given the closure of many family courts in our area until the counties began to open back up for business. As such, if you believe that a family law case does need to be filed it is recommended that you inquire about hiring an experienced family law attorney to represent you and your interests. 

Questions about the material contained in today's blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan

The attorneys and staff with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan would like to thank you for choosing to spend part of your day with us here in our block. If you have any questions about the information contained in our blog post, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer free of charge consultation six days a week or we can answer your questions and address your Video concerns. Consultations are available in person, over the phone in via video. 

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