• Mark Lane Law Offices


It's easy to misunderstand the basic principles involving “child custody”. Each case is different, so remember the information is for purposes of just that “information”. Always consult your attorney or call our office at 817-377-1077. We are always available for general questions regarding The Texas Family Law Code.

The Texas Family Law Code uses the term “Conservatorship” rather than “Custody”. Specific types of Conservatorship being Joint Managing Conservatorship or Sole Managing Conservatorship. To break it down even further, either party can be appointed a Managing Conservator or Possessory Conservator. These terms are often synonymous with Custodial Parent and Non-Custodial Parent.


Let’s get an idea of how this breaks down:

Managing Conservators are just that “managing”. Managing conservators have all the rights and responsibilities a parent would normally have. More importantly the right to “manage” the child’s affairs until the child is no longer a minor. Below are some examples of common affairs of a minor child that the managing conservator is responsible for:

  • Education

  • Medical and Dental

  • Psychological and Psychiatric Care

  • Religion

  • Behavior, Social Welfare and Moral Principles

  • Financial Welfare

  • Legal Rights and Representation

  • Employment (teen)

  • Involvement in Clubs, Sports, and Other Extra-Curricular Activities

  • Consent to Marriage

  • Consent to Armed Forces Enlistment

Possession of or Access to is different. Possessory Conservators have the right to “access to” the child under a specifically defined schedule. A Possessory Conservator has the right to inherit and bequeath assets through the child. In some specific cases that involve danger or abuse where the child is concerned the court may severely limit access to the child and often times with supervision.

Managing Conservatorship: SOLE VS. JOINT

This one is simple!

  • Sole Managing Conservatorship = One person holds all managing conservatorship rights and responsibilities listed previously.

  • Joint Managing Conservatorship = Two (or more) persons share the rights and responsibilities of a managing conservatorship.

Fairly simple, right? Not always…but for sake of a simplistic definition…ok! Always consult a qualified attorney that specializes in the field of Family Law for answers to your specific questions. Call our office anytime to get the answers you need, Mark Lane Law at 817-377-1077.

In most cases, Texas Family Law appoints “Joint Managing Conservators”, with exception of cases that involve family violence or other risks of harm to the child or children. The idea is to create an environment for the child that both parents have a healthy parent-child relationship.

There are many other elements that must not be over-looked in order to maintain a healthy parent-child relationship that we haven’t covered. A qualified attorney can speak more in depth about these elements. Other issues include the following:

  • The Exclusive Right to Designate the Primary Residence

  • Geographic Restrictions

  • Amount of Child Support to be paid

  • 50/50 Schedule

  • Payment of Medical Expenses

  • Health Insurance coverage for the child/children

  • Application for Passport and Possession of children’s Passports

Any parent is obligated to support (shelter, food, clothing, medical care, etc.) a child, regardless of “managing” or “possessory” conservators. If you are a parent you have a duty to care for and protect your child. The optimal, healthiest situation for any child that is subject to the before-mentioned arrangements is to have parents, regardless of “managing” or not to show the highest respect to the other parent. Your child’s health and happiness depends on it.

Leave the details to a qualified attorney that is trained in over 4500+ cases. Call Mark Lane Law Office today. You can reach us at 817-377-1077 or by email mark@marklanelaw.com. Visit our website at www.marklanelaw.com


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Fort Worth, TX  76116


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