Is the Parent Who Has More Money More Likely to Get Custody in Texas Child Custody Cases?
We’ve all heard that the legal system caters to people with money, but the reality is a lot more complicated than that. In Texas child custody cases, money can be an advantage, to be sure. It won’t, however, determine custody. There is no explicit provision in Texas law giving any priority to the parent who makes more money. So if you don’t earn a large income, take heart. There’s no reason to believe you can’t get custody of your child.
Can the Court Consider Income?
Texas law doesn’t give any preference to the parent who makes more money, and a judge will likely not directly consider income. Money can, however, be an advantage because it allows you provide your child with more resources. In this way, courts can look at income. A parent who can’t meet his or her child’s minimal needs may be at a disadvantage. For example, if you can’t afford to live on your own or to fund quality child care, this may weigh against you. But if you can meet your child’s basic needs, it is unlikely that your income will directly weigh on child custody decisions.
Why Money is an Advantage
The fact that judges don’t consider income as a primary factor in a child’s best interests doesn’t mean it’s irrelevant. Money is a significant advantage because it allows you to fight more aggressively for custody. People with money can afford to hire pricey experts. They can afford to pay expensive lawyers and litigate to the death.
Not all good lawyers come at bankruptcy-inducing rates, though. The best lawyers will be economical with your money, use your resources wisely, and advise you about which strategies are most likely to be effective. Be honest with your attorney about your financial needs, and he or she will be better equipped to work within the constraints you set.
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