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The Texas Family Code includes a Standard and Expanded Standard Possession Order (for children 3 and older) that covers weekdays, weekends, certain holidays and extended summer possession. Although some parents don’t like the term possession, the legal terms for visitation are possession and access of the children. The most common possession schedule for parents who have been divorced in the past several years is probably the Expanded Standard Possession Order. This schedule includes the first, third and fifth weekends of the month from the time school is dismissed on Friday until the time school resumes on Monday. It also includes every Thursday during the school year from the time school is dismissed until the time school resumes on Friday.
However, 50/50 possession schedules have become more common for parents, although the Family Code does not contain a 50/50 possession schedule. Typically, a 50/50 schedule works best for parents who are both active participants in their children’s daily lives, schooling and activities. If the parents have a healthy co-parenting relationship, a 50/50 schedule can be beneficial to everyone involved and allows the children to maximize quality time with both parents.
Just as there are a myriad of different structures for conservatorship, the options for possession schedules are almost limitless. Some situations require a supervised possession schedule where one parent is supervised by a licensed professional, or a family member, during their time with the children. With children under 3 years of age, we often design customized possession schedules that typically include more frequent visits that gradually step up into a more standard type of schedule.
A possession schedule should be designed to fit the needs of your family and your children’s lives. The members of our firm strives to help our clients obtain the schedule that best suits their particular situation.