Childcare is one of the most important issues that divorcing spouses have to work out. Texas law recognizes that it is generally in children’s best interests for both parents to maintain an active role in childcare.
Here are some of the most important rights and responsibilities associated that the law attributes to the roles of joint managing conservators.
As a practical matter, both parents must be able to consent to medical treatment on their children’s behalf. Decisions about emergency treatment may come down to who is responsible for care at the time that child requires treatment. However, both parents have a continuous right to access information about medical care and contact providers with questions or concerns.
According to state law governing conservatorship, there is a rebuttable presumption that both parents should have input on children’s education. They need to confer with one another about major decisions involving school and extracurricular activities. Both have the right to attend school events, meet with teachers, and be designated emergency contacts.
Joint managing conservators must be able to share and receive information with one another. Ultimately, parents need to work cooperatively to make decisions as joint managing conservators. Good cooperation facilitates effective co-parenting, avoids potential conflicts and supports children’s well-being.
Ultimately, Texas law affirms that both parents should get a say in key matters affecting their children’s well-being unless one parent can present evidence that sharing decision-making authority would jeopardize the children’s well-being. During the divorce process, it is helpful for parents to establish a comprehensive plan to coordinate care and clarify responsibilities.