But once the decision to dissolve a marriage is made, other issues follow. Child custody may be the most important of all issues that needs settling. Typically, one of the parties will take on the role of custodial parent. That is to say, he or she will have the children for the majority of the time. The other parent will likely seek to have visitation rights.
In Texas, divorcing parents have two options when it comes to working out child custody issues. If they are able to work together, the parents can create what is called a parenting plan. They then submit this plan for approval to the court. However, if for some reason the parents fail to submit a parenting plan to the court, the court will make its own decisions regarding custody.
While a judge will likely do his or her level best to make fair custody decisions, the fact is that only those who are directly involved in the situation will truly understand their family's circumstances. This is why, if it is possible, it is a good idea for both parents to work together and develop an amenable parenting plan. This sort of cooperative effort can help clarify each parent's responsibilities and rights without being forced into something less agreeable by a court.
If you are going through a divorce and have custody issues with which to contend, you may want to solicit the services of an experienced family law attorney. The attorney may be able to help you work out a satisfactory parenting plan. Also, if your ex-spouse is not willing to work in a spirit of cooperativeness, the attorney could act as your representative in presenting your custodial preferences to the court.