Super Lawyers
Dallas 500
Best D 2024 - 21 Years
Best Lawyers Best Law Firms
500 Leading Family Lawyers
Best of the Best Attorneys
Board Certified
International Advisory Experts
Best Lawyers Under 40
Dynamic Women in Dallas Best Family Lawyers in Dallas 2022
top attorneys Forth Worth Magazine
Leaders in Law
Power Players
National Diversity Council
Adam Mundt Certified Public
Super Lawyers Risign Stars
Top 50 Attorneys in Texas
Top 100 Attorneys in Texas
Top 50 Women Attorneys in Texas
Top 10 Blog Posts
Women Leaders in Law
Top 10 Dallas
Best of the Best Attorneys
Collaborative Divorce Texas
Family Law Top 10
Top Rated Women
Best Lawyers 2024
Lawyers of Distinction
Super Lawyers Up and Coming 100 Texas

Primary Factors in Child Custody Determinations

Dallas Child Custody Lawyers Advocating for the Best Interests of Children

Co-parenting can be challenging for several reasons, and parents are often unable to come to an agreement as to how custody should be divided. As such, in many cases, parties who have a child together will ask the court to define their parental rights. In any Texas custody action, the courts’ sole concern is what is in the best interest of the child. It is important, therefore, for anyone involved in a custody dispute to speak to an attorney regarding the primary factors in child custody determinations, how the courts assess them, and how they may impact their rights. If you need help with a disagreement over custody, it is advisable to consult an attorney to evaluate your options. The assertive Dallas child custody lawyers of McClure Law Group have ample experience handling challenging custody disputes, and if we represent you, we will work tirelessly to help you seek the outcome you deserve.

Primary Factors in Child Custody Determinations in Texas

The Texas Family Code (the Code) dictates that the best interest of the child standard must guide courts’ decisions in matters related to child custody and visitation. The Code does not provide a specific definition for this standard, but it is generally understood that the well-being and welfare of the child should be prioritized above all else when determining arrangements concerning their care and upbringing. It is important, therefore, for anyone involved in a custody matter to understand the primary factors in child custody determinations in Texas that the courts weigh to determine what arrangement would serve the child's best interests.

In determining what is best for a child, the court will evaluate the child's age, physical and emotional needs, and any special education or health concerns they may have that require additional care or attention. The courts will also consider each parent's ability to meet the child's emotional, physical, and developmental needs, including providing a stable home environment, financial support, and appropriate care.

Courts examine whether the child has ties with a community, school, or relationships with siblings or other family members and how the living arrangements each parent is able to offer will hinder or promote such connections.

Importantly, the courts will consider evidence of past or current abuse, neglect, or family violence committed by either parent or anyone in their household, as it could jeopardize the safety and well-being of the child. Courts consider any evidence of substance abuse, mental health issues, criminal behavior, or other factors that may affect a parent's ability to care for the child as well.

Courts also evaluate the quality of the child's relationship with each parent and the parent’s ability to foster a meaningful and supportive bond with the child. If the child is of a suitable age and maturity, their wishes regarding custody and visitation may be taken into consideration as well, although this is not determinative and is subject to the court’s discretion.

Courts also take into account the parents' ability to co-parent effectively and their willingness to encourage and facilitate a positive relationship between the child and the other parent.

Factors Not Considered in Child Custody Determinations in Texas

It is also important for anyone involved in a Texas custody action to understand that the court does not consider certain factors. For example, the court does not assess the gender, race, religion, or marital status of the parents when making custody determinations, as Texas law specifically mandates that the court cannot discriminate against either parent based on these characteristics.

Additionally, the court typically does not consider the parents' personal conduct unless it directly affects the child's welfare. Similarly, the parents' financial status or wealth is not a primary factor in determining custody arrangements. By excluding these factors, Texas family courts aim to maintain fairness, impartiality, and a child-centered approach when making custody determinations.

Meet with an Experienced Dallas Child Custody Attorney

In Texas custody cases, the courts always rule in the best interest of the children. As such, it is important for anyone involved in a custody dispute to understand primary factors in child custody determinations. If you need help with a custody issue, it is smart to meet with an attorney as soon as possible. The experienced Dallas child custody attorneys of McClure Law Group are well-informed as to what it takes to obtain favorable outcomes in custody matters, and if you hire us, we can gather the evidence needed to provide you with a strong chance of obtaining your desired result. Our main office is located in Dallas, and we have a Collin-County office, which is located in Plano, where we are available to meet clients by appointment. We regularly represent parents in child custody actions in Dallas, McKinney, Fort Worth, Frisco, Rockwall, Irving, Richardson, and Garland. We also assist parties with family-law matters in cities in Dallas, Denton, Rockwall, Collin, Tarrant, and Grayson. You can reach us by calling 214.692.8200 or by using our form online to arrange a conference.

Client Reviews
"McClure Law Group was very professional and responsive. They listened to my concerns and desires as it pertains to the service requested and I'm very pleased." Jade Nguyen
"Kelly and her team are always a pleasure to work with, and their work product always exceeds one’s expectations." George Tamke
"When I most needed professional, good quality responses McClure Law Group was there. Thank you for the service that I have received from everyone!" Norma Charles
"McClure Law Group’s team is very responsive! I have very much appreciated their communication. They are always on top of what is happening and return my calls or emails quickly." Brie Cherry
"Kelly McClure has been representing me for the past several years and has been an amazing advocate, confidant and sounding board. She is always available by phone, even when she is on vacation. She has answered my questions on weekends and always given me an honest opinion. I highly recommend this group to anyone." Heather Bell
"The McClure Law Group helped me through a very difficult divorce and they definitely had my back every step of the way. I couldn’t recommend the team enough!" Shell A.
"I could not be happier to have had McClure Law. I truly appreciate their accessibility and patience. I can tell they are very knowledgeable, and I trust their guidance. I am SO thankful I went with great lawyers to handle my family case." Victor Lollar
"Kelly is detailed oriented and she truly cares about her clients. Her knowledge of the laws and her ability to get a case resolved make her stand far above others. I highly recommend McClure for your family law needs!" Peter Morgan