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Understanding Parenting Plans and Child Support During Divorce

Separating from your spouse is never easy. Instead, it’s chaotic and tumultuous, and the process will wear down anyone. Yet, you’re not the only one divorce can affect. If you’re a parent, your children will feel some of the hurt that comes with a divorce.

That’s why courts require you to make parenting plans if you and your spouse are thinking about splitting up. With parenting plans, children are protected from any conflict between their parents. They also give children the structure they need to continue growing up healthily.

Most of all, making divorce parenting plans shows your children that you still care about them. It’s never easy to separate from your loved one and your family, but making plans to make sure everyone involved has some level of stability and security is a crucial step.

Keep reading below to learn more about divorce parenting plans, and how they’re made.


Making Parenting Plans During a Divorce Is Crucial


As you go through a divorce, you may not be able to think straight. The stress of separating will get to anyone, and it may seem hard to make plans that are both fair and effective. Yet, it’s crucial that you at least try.

As a matter of fact, you will break the law in Texas if you fail to make a plan. The state requires that you and your spouse agree on how custody of your children is handled.. That way, the child will still be able to grow up in a family with the benefits of having both of their parents in their life.

Divorce parenting plans aren’t really about the parents at all. They’re about protecting the children from the harm a divorce can cause.


You’re Divorcing Your Spouse, Not Your Kids! 


No matter what you may think about your family as you go through a divorce, you’ll always be a parent to your children. You may be able to leave your spouse and your relationship, but you’ll never be able to stop being a mother or a father.

As a matter of fact, relinquishing your parental rights is a complex and long process. Once paternity and maternity are established, it’s difficult to legally get rid of. The only way to do so is to prove you are incapable of raising the child.

It should go without saying that as a parent, you have legal and moral obligations to your children. Now is the time to establish clear roles between you and your spouse that are in your children’s best interest. 


Child Support Is Required by Law


Texas requires that separated parents both contribute to raising their children. Depending on each parent’s resources and income, the non-custodial parent will need to pay a certain amount in child support every month.

Generally speaking, the amount you need to pay (or will receive) is directly tied to income and the number of children involved. The more children you have, the more of a proportion of your income you will have to pay. 

First, the non-custodial parent’s net income is calculated, and then a percentage based on the number of children is used to determine the amount of support. For one child 20% of the non-custodial parent’s net income will be the amount of child support paid, and increases up to 40% with four or more children. 


Negotiate Custody with Your Spouse


A crucial step to creating effective divorce parenting plans is talking about them with your spouse. You should both be on the same page about when each of you can visit the child. You should at least agree on who will continue to have custody over them.

Otherwise, the courts will decide for you, and that is a complex process. They consider the child’s adjustment to their current home, each parent’s aptitude at being a parent, and each parent’s income. Going over all that will drag out the divorce process.


Divorces Can Be Chaotic, and an Attorney Can Help!


You’re not alone when you’re going through a divorce. Everything can seem hopeless as you try to get through the process, and making parenting plans can be a challenging task. To get through it, you need an attorney on your side.

With a family lawyer, you’ll have an expert to talk with about how to get through this. They’ll counsel you on what you should do, and will always be there to help. 

Contact a dedicated family law specialist at Scott M. Brown & Associates at 281-612-8241 for a consultation. We have offices located in Angleton, League City/Clear Lake, and Pearland.


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