My husband is being brought to court for additional child support and a reduction in visitation. This resulted from his 15 year old not wanting to live by his rules. She is looking to live a more carefree life with her mother, younger sister and step-father where rules, regulations and expectations are not high. In essence, they want more money, but want to deny my husband time with his kids. According to Texas Family Law, 25% of his salary must go to child support. This will hurt us financially in a big way, preventing us from providing for the kids like we normally do when they are with us as well as putting our goal into moving into a bigger house on hold. My questions are: 1) Is it worth fighting for 50/50 custody and to claim one of the children at tax time? 2) Can his ex and daughter fight for a reduction in visitation, even if the current visitation agreement has been active for 3 years? 3) Can you recommend a good father friendly attorney? It seems the law is so in favor of the mother, without any regards to the father and his new life after a divorce. In no way do we want to deny his children. We just want a fair chance.
Allow me to preface my answer to your question with the disclaimer that I am not licensed to practice law in the state of Texas. 1) I do not understand from the facts presented above what grounds you have to request 50/50 custody. With a child at age 15 the court is likely to listen to what the child has to say. In general, custody is modified if there has been a substantial and continuing change of circumstances with your former spouse and/or your child. 2) As far as a reduction in time, I would say that if that is what is requested by the child, then again that is likely to be granted by the Court. However if there are no valid reasons presented then it is likely that the Court will deny their request. These issues are extremely fact sensitive. The length of the arrangement is not relevant if they can show that there has been a change of circumstances. 3) You can look on our website for a Texas referral. Simply go to http://www.dadsdivorce.com/resources/refer.php and enter your state and county information.