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What would I need to gain complete custody of my son in the state of Texas?

Dallas, TX |

My son was born in January of 2010, his father has done nothing these past three years and in February of this year he was ordered to start paying child support (the state filed it on him, I did not). He has not paid it and has no intention to, yet he gets visitation. He has a history of violence and 2 family assaults on his record, he acts out and it scares me when my son is over there as I do not know what is going to happen. I have witnesses to him beating me in front of our son as well. Even when our son goes over there I have to pick him up early because his father is "tired of him" his words, not mine.

Attorney Answers 3

  1. Best answer

    I think you mean denying all visitation. There are two ways - the first is very hard. Terminate his parental rights. It is hard because it is against the public policy of Texas (in most cases) to destroy the relationship between a father and son. However, you have the facts that may lead to a termination. At that point, no visitation would occur, the father would no longer have any rights or visitation whatsoever and be unable to get them back in the future without your agreement, and would not pay child support. Another reason this is difficult is because if the child or you use any state resources (medicare/caid, food stamps, any welfare program) the state wants to recoup its money somehow, and the father is the best way. They will intercept tax refunds or use any other method they have available.

    The second route is to modify the visitation and possession schedule based on the facts you present. This is easier, and could lead to no visitation until the father attends counseling himself and then with the child, hopefully all on his dime, supervised visitation only, or anything up to what he has now. The benefit - you continue to possibly get child support. The drawback, he maintains his rights and the ability to build into a standard possession order in the future.

    Any route you go, you want to get an attorney and a good one, to present your case. Neither route is easy, and it is going to take some time to get it done.

    The immediate stop to visitation is the protective order or a temporary restraining order as stated by the other attorney.

    This answer is intended for informational and educational purposes only and should not be considered legal advice nor forming the attorney client relationship. This attorney is licensed in Texas.

  2. I am sorry that you are going through this and I hate to say this but you need a local Dallas attny, you have plenty of good evidence and you sound like a wonderful parent, please work with a local attny and she will make sure the documents are handled properlty and filed correctly. take care.

    Legal disclaimer: The response given is not intended to create, nor does it create an ongoing duty to respond to questions. The response does not form an attorney-client relationship, nor is it intended to be anything other than the educated opinion of the author. It should not be relied upon as legal advice. The response given is based upon the limited facts provided by the person asking the question. To the extent additional or different facts exist, the response might possibly change. Attorney is licensed to practice law only in the State of Massachusetts. Responses are based solely on Massachusetts law unless stated otherwise.

  3. You should not wait another day to meet with an attorney. If these facts are recent then you and your child may be in danger, and you may need a protective order, which would put a stop to visits and allow you some protection. Please contact a family law attorney in Dallas, as soon as possible.

    This answer is general information which does not establish any attorney-client relationship between the person asking a question and the person answering, or a duty to respond to ongoing questions; nor is it intended to replace competent legal assistance in the jurisdiction where the matter/issue arises or is before a Court.

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