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Plano Family Law Blog

Special custody considerations for a child with special needs

When you argue for custody in front of the Texas family courts, the judge will always want to make a decision that is in the best interests of the children. For the average family, those best interests usually include getting to spend significant amounts of time with both parents.

Nearly equal custody splits are increasingly common, but they may not be the right solution for every family. If your family includes a child with special needs, you will need to carefully consider what will be best for your child as you proceed with divorce.

Kids splitting up? Is that in their best interests?

As parents, you want your kids to be happy. What you didn't expect was that the divorce would divide them. Your daughter wants to go to live with her dad, because he's going to be close to her high school and friends. Your son wants to live with you, because he's young and is used to you being at home with him through the day.

You and your spouse have talked it over, and you're not sure what you should do. On one hand, it's better to keep the kids together. On the other hand, the separation could also be beneficial, especially because there is such a large age gap between your children.

Get the right assets to care for your child after divorce

Divorcing with children makes any divorce more complex. Making sure your children have all they need at both parents' new homes is something both parents should take responsibility to ensure is in place.

For parents who are on the same page with their custody schedules, the most important thing to do is make sure their children have what they need at both homes. This may mean that for some items that are not feasible to travel back and forth, duplicates will be needed.

Divorce considerations for parents whose child has special needs

Getting divorced when you have children is never easy, but the experience can be increasingly difficult when your son or daughter has special needs. A child with special needs may have higher care requirements than other children in the same age group. He or she may also struggle more with your divorce.

Paying attention to your child's needs and processing capabilities as you begin your divorce can guide the way you handle ending your marriage. In the end, these considerations may smoothen the process for your entire family.

Tips for dealing with an ex who doesn't want a divorce

Determining that a marriage isn't worth saving usually happens over time. Once you come to the final decision, you have to tell your ex. But, they might not be willing to accept the fact that the marriage is over. This can make a challenging situation even more difficult.

At first, you may think that you can go through the divorce process with your ex in an amicable manner. Many people can make this happen by remaining focused on the issues at hand and remembering the ultimate goal. When your ex is making things more stressful, you might have to alter your plans for the divorce.

A lifestyle analysis could benefit your divorce settlement

Divorce courts try to ensure that neither spouse suffers a significant decrease in their previous standard of living when going through a separation.

A divorce can lead to a huge shift in standards of living because of the loss of an additional income. This is why divorcing spouses need to prepare to fight for a fair division of assets, and the implementation of alimony, otherwise known as spousal support. One way to ensure that a divorce is settled fairly is to undergo a lifestyle analysis.

How will the courts split up your assets in a Texas divorce?

Unless you and your ex signed a thorough prenuptial agreement or set terms for a postnuptial agreement due to marital issues, it is nearly impossible to predict the exact outcome of a divorce. Although there is a legal standard that exists for property division in Texas, much of the standard is interpretive and gives authority and discretion to the judges to use as they see fit based on the details of the situation.

If you don't have a written agreement with your former spouse about how you want to split up your possessions if you divorce, it is nearly impossible to predict who will get what and how much of which asset you have the right to retain. However, informing yourself about the community property standard for asset division in Texas can help you understand how the courts will make decisions regarding your possessions.

Custody of your special needs child could affect spousal support

Parents considering divorce often have to spend some time examining how their divorce will impact their children. For parents with special needs children, it can become much more complex to navigate a divorce without the process impacting the well-being of their child.

From shielding your child from anger between you and your ex to planning for their financial protection in the event that you die, there are many unique considerations that special needs children require during divorce proceedings.

Divorce and property: When you don't want to sell your home

If you're getting divorced in Texas, then you need to know about the property division rules. Texas is one of only a few states that has a community property system. A community property system creates a fair base for a divorce. Why? It means that you have to split your assets 50-50.

Of course, the only assets you're intended to divide equally are marital assets. That's why it's very important for you to clarify which properties you own are your own separate property and which are marital property.

The way you ask for a divorce can impact the process

Before your divorce case moves into mediation or litigation, there's an important step you can't afford to overlook: the manner in which you'll ask your spouse for a divorce.

If you're in a dead-end marriage, you may assume that it will be easy enough to tell your spouse that you want a divorce. However, as you prepare to do so, you'll come to find that there are many questions lingering in your mind.

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