In Texas, if parents have “shared custody” of the children after a divorce, would either parent pay child support?

In most cases, the answer is yes.  It could be that either parent would be required to pay child support.  Whether or not a parent has to pay child support depends on what the court determines to be in the best interests of the child, not on the type of custody granted by the court.

Furthermore, courts do not define shared or joint custody to mean that each parent has the child fifty percent of the time.  The non-custodial parent who has less physical possession of the children is generally required to pay financial child support to the primary custodial parent for the benefit of the children.

The legislature by statute has adopted Child Support Guidelines based on percentages of income according to number of children.  For example, if the net monthly income of the parent is less than $8,550, these guidelines require 20% of net resources for one child, 25% of net resources for two children, 30% for three children, etc. in increments of 5% for each additional child.  Experienced Houston child custody attorneys, such as those at LaFour Law, can assist you in making a child support amount determination based on your particular case that the court will be likely to support.

“Shared custody” in Texas falls under the designation of “Joint Managing Conservatorship” and it refers more to the rights and duties of the parents as opposed to physical possession of the children.

These rights that may be shared in a joint managing conservatorship include the right to

  • Designate the primary residence for the child
  • Consent to medical, dental and surgical treatment involving invasive procedures and psychiatric and psychological treatment
  • Receive and give receipt for periodic payments for the support of the child and to hold or disburse these funds for the benefit of the child
  • Represent the child in legal action and make other decisions of substantial legal significance concerning the child
  • Consent to marriage and to enlistment in the armed forces of the USA
  • Make decisions concerning the child’s education
  • Right to the services and earnings of the child
  • Act as an agent of the child in relations to the child’s estate if the child’s action is required by a state, the USA or a foreign government (except in cases where a guardian of the child’s estate or a guardian ad litem has been appointed for a child)

Schedule an appointment today with LaFour Law, a Houston child custody law firm, today to discuss questions you may have regarding child support payments that you may be required to pay.

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