When it comes to determining custody arrangements in Texas, parents and children often wonder if a child’s preference can impact the final decision.
Texas family law recognizes the importance of considering a child’s wishes, but there are some specific guidelines to understand.
Understanding the best interests of the child
The primary focus in custody cases is the best interests of the child. This means that any decision made regarding custody must prioritize what is best for the child’s well-being. The court takes into account several factors, including the child’s physical and emotional needs and their relationship with each parent.
In Texas, the age of the child plays a significant role in whether the courts will consider their preference. Typically, children who are 12 years or older may have the opportunity to express their preference. The court may take their wishes into account when making a custody determination. However, the child’s preference is not the sole deciding factor.
Taking into account the child’s wishes
The court will also evaluate the reasons behind the child’s choice. If the child can provide valid reasons that align with their best interests, it is more likely that their preference will carry weight. On the other hand, if external factors appear to influence the child’s choice, such as manipulation or pressure from a parent, the court may put less weight on the child’s wishes.
While 70.1% of children lived with two parents in 2019, every family is unique. Divorcing parents should strive to create a supportive environment for their children to minimize stress and minimize the impact of the changing family dynamics.