Geographic Restrictions in Texas Family Law Cases

by Ricardo Barrera

father holding hand of son on going to school or daycare

In Texas, a geographic restriction may be imposed in a divorce or suit affecting the parent-child relationship. This is to ensure that there is no undue burden to the access to the child and best interest of the child. A proper request may be made to the court in order to restrict the residence of the child to a school district, city, county, state, or geographical areas. Sometimes one parent has a compelling reason to leave the area, especially when it’s economically necessary and it’s in the best interest of the child. 

It’s persuasive to the court to support this move out of the area when the other parent is not fulfilling their obligations of support, nor are they participating in their rights and duties related to the child. Sometimes it’s necessary for a judge or jury to hear evidence relating to either imposing or lifting a geographic restriction. The court will be looking for clear and convincing evidence to support a finding depending on the best interest of the child. 

It may be that a geographic restriction is imposed on the residence of the child but that parent and child have moved out of that geographical zone, but the other parent is complaining about the move, and wants it to be prohibited, according to that restriction. When this is the case, it’s persuasive to the court to consider the distance the other parent resides outside of that restriction. If one violates a court order where there is a geographic restriction on the residence of the child, one may request an enforcement of the violation and request custody be modified. This is a fact-sensitive strategy that requires good evidence to support.

For more information, call The Barrera Law Firm at 956-428-2822 for a free consultation or reach us online.



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