Experienced, Empathetic Advocacy In Family Law And Criminal Defense
  1. Home
  2.  » 
  3. Family Law Overview
  4.  » Child Support & Visitation Modifications FAQs

FAQs On Texas Child Support And Visitation Modifications

Last updated on July 10, 2024

When life circumstances change after a child support or custody order is in place, one or both parents may need to pursue a modification to those orders. Here are answers to some common questions we hear at The Law Offices of Randy Wilson and Kristin Postell, PLLC, about modifying child-related orders in Texas.

What qualifies as grounds for modification of family law orders?

For Texas child support and custody/visitation orders, a “material and substantial change in circumstances” is required for modification. For visitation plans, this could include significant changes affecting the child’s well-being or living situation.

For child support orders, grounds may include a substantial change in a parent’s income or employment status that impacts their ability to pay support or a significant change in the child’s needs, such as increased medical expenses.

What is a ‘material and substantial change’ for visitation?

For visitation modifications in Texas, there’s no one-size-fits-all definition of a “material and substantial change.” A judge may consider:

  • Changes in the child’s living situation
  • Potential relocation and its impact on the current visitation schedule
  • Changes in the child’s needs or well-being
  • Anything that affects the child’s quality of life or emotional well-being
  • The child’s preference (if they are 12 years of age and older)

The main aim remains to create an agreement that meets the child’s best interests.

Can both parents agree to modifications without court?

Yes, parents can enter into revised agreements for child support or parenting time schedules. These informal agreements aren’t legally binding or enforceable, however, until they’re approved by the court.

How does a child’s preference for visitation change?

For younger children, their stated preference may not carry much weight unless there are indications of potential harm or misconduct by a parent. As children get older, around 12 years old, courts can give more consideration to their desires in determining a visitation schedule, as long as their reasoning is sound. However, the ultimate decision still rests with the court.

Contact Us Today

For more guidance regarding Texas family law, contact attorney Kristin Postell for a free consultation in Abilene. Our family law lawyer can help you pursue a fair outcome.