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3 Parts to a Kid
Possession and Access
In my opinion there are three parts to a child when considering any court ordered relationship. Each of the three parts general work together in a common sense type way, but they are completely separate and can be modified by the Court in thousands of ways.
The second part of the kid is "Possession and Access." Essentially this is who has the child at any given time.
The Texas Legislature has specific a Standard Possession Order. Recently this was modified to provide a possession order for when conservators live under 50 miles from each other, from 50-100 miles, and for over 100 miles apart. The main difference between the first two options are start and end time. The third option for over 100 miles allows for the conservator that is not the primary residence to elect from two different options for possession times.
In short form- the Standard Possession Order grants a conservator that is NOT the primary residence conservator possession of the child as follows:
- During School Year: every Thursday and the 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends of the month.
****Note: Weekends are counted by Friday. You look at a monthly calendar, and the first Friday of that month is the first weekend. Sometimes the 30th or 31st day of the prior month falls on a Friday, that would make that weekend the 5th weekend of the prior month. The conservator would then get the immediately following weekend as the first weekend of the next month.
- During Summer: the 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends and 30 days that can be designated, but if no designation then the month of July.
There are some exceptions and special rules within the Standard Possession Order, but the outline above is the general form of the Standard Possession Order.
A conservator can also be granted an Expanded Standard Possession Order. This designation means that all periods of possession during the school year start at the time school is released and continue until the next day school resumes. Otherwise, a Standard Possession Order will start the possession periods and end the possession periods at 6:00 pm.
The Court is limited in what possession periods can be ordered. The presumption is that the Standard (or Expanded Standard) Possession Order is in the best interest of the child. To vary from that can be a feat and requires some legally factual reasons to modify that schedule.
However, conservators may be agreement customize any type of schedule that would work for them. Working together amicably, or through a professional if necessary, can be vital to having a schedule where the conservators actually get quality time to spend with the child.
Lacy Kimball strives to customize possession schedules that actually work for the parties involved and often times proposes very custom schedules based on the work schedules of the conservators and activities of the child.