The most wonderful time of the year is right around the corner, which means you’ll soon hear all the familiar sounds of the season: leaves crunching beneath your feet, sleigh bells ringing in the distance, the fireplace crackling, and your neighbor arguing in the driveway with their ex again.
The holiday season is a notoriously busy time in the family law calendar. Custody arrangements need to be sorted in time for kids to be enrolled in their new school before the spring semester, nobody agrees about who has the kids for Thanksgiving, and court dates are tough to come by with all of the holidays to work around. Your Shemesh Family Law attorney understands the many challenges and worries you might have during the busy holiday season, and we’re ready to help.
If you are going through a custody dispute for the first time, or if you believe that a separation is looming, no doubt you have wondered what will happen with your children over the holidays. Reaching a possession agreement with the other parent of your children is a top priority, especially during this time. If no agreement can be reached, speak with your attorney right away. Your attorney will attempt to negotiate a possession agreement on your behalf, incorporating your input and never reaching agreement without your consent.
I’ve tried talking with my ex, my lawyer has negotiated with their lawyer, and my ex still will not agree to let me have the kids over the holidays. Now what? Your attorney will likely request a temporary orders hearing in front of the judge. In most cases, the judge is overwhelmingly likely to divide coveted Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years dates as evenly as possible. Most frequently, one parent will have the children for Thanksgiving and New Years in one year, and the other parent will have Christmas in that same year. The next year, it alternates. This holiday schedule comes straight from Texas’ Standard Possession Order, which is the default in the majority of cases.
What about Halloween? Halloween is not recognized as a standard holiday in Texas, which means that your judge is unlikely to order that Halloween alternate every other year. This commonly results in one parent having the kids on Halloween for multiple years in a row. If Halloween is precious to you, the only way to ensure that you will have your fair share is to reach agreement with the other parent of your children.
Your attorney is ready to assist with all of these issues and more this holiday season, whether you need to know how Christmas gifts will be paid, or you need a possession schedule, let us help you keep your holidays merry and bright.