If appropriate, a parent in Texas may be given sole legal or physical custody of their child. In some cases, a parent may have sole legal and physical custody of a son or daughter. Legal custody refers to a parent’s ability to make important decisions about how a child is raised. If an individual has physical custody of a child, it means that the minor spends the majority of his or her time living with that person.
In the event that a parent has sole physical custody of a child, the noncustodial parent may still have visitation or other rights to a son or daughter. In most cases, a judge will allow both parents to share custody of their children. However, granting a parent full custody may be necessary if the other parent has a history of abuse or neglect.
Parents who have significant mental illnesses may not be emotionally stable enough to safely care for a child. The same may be true of a person who is battling a drug or alcohol addiction. Parents who are incarcerated may be denied custody rights while they are in prison or jail. However, they may be granted visitation rights after they are released, and custodial parents are allowed to bring their children to a jail or prison to visit with an incarcerated mother or father.
An attorney may be able to help those who are seeking sole legal or physical child custody rights. The attorney may be able to use medical records, witness statements or other information to show that the other parent shouldn’t be allowed to make decisions on a child’s behalf. Attorneys may also help noncustodial parents prove to a judge that modifying a custody order would be in a child’s best interest.