Whether you are the parent of a child and want to modify custody or support, or whether you are not the parent and are attempting to establish custody and support of the child, the Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC is here to help you accomplish your goals as they relate to child custody and support.
Child custody and support arrangements are most often brought about by a divorce, and their provisions are often set out in a divorce decree. Often, the situations of the parents change, and so modifications are not only appropriate, but also necessary for the best interests of the child (which is the determining factor in most child custody and support disputes).
Even if you are not the natural parent of a child, you can be appointed as the sole managing conservator to a child if certain conditions are met. Generally, to get custody of a child that is not yours, you will need to have had possession of the child for a year and it must be in the child’s best interests (other factors may apply, depending on the situation). While getting custody of the child is not often as ideal as an adoption, it provides certain advantages: first, it is easier to get than an adoption, and second, it obligates the natural parents of the child to provide child support (this obligation ceases after an adoption).
Child Custody or Support Modifications
Texas law allows for child support to be modified when either the circumstances of the child or an affected party have materially and substantially changed since the date of the rendition, or if 3 years have passed and the support deviates from the guidelines by the greater of $100 or 20%.
Texas law allows for child custody to be modified if the modification is in the best interest of the child and either (1) the circumstances have materially and substantially changed since the date of rendition; (2) a child who is at least 12 years old has expressed a desire for modification; or (3) a conservator with the exclusive right to designate the primary residence has relinquished the primary care of the child and possession of the child for at least six months.
If a modification of custody is sought within one year, additional factors have to be met.
The Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC offers flat fees for most family-law related services. Typical flat fees are as follows:
- $1,250 - Prenuptial/Postnuptial Agreements (more if your case is extremely complex). Prenuptial agreements, marital property divisions, partition and exchange agreements, etc.
- $4,000-$8,750 - Adoption (more if your case is extremely complex; you are responsible for costs).
- $2,000 - Uncontested Divorce (you are responsible for costs). Both parties must agree on everything.
- $4,500-$10,000 - Contested Divorce (more if your case is extremely complex; you are responsible for costs).
- $3,750 - Child Custody Modification (you are responsible for costs).
- $2,000 - Uncontested Child Custody Modification (you are responsible for costs). Both parties must agree on everything.
- $2,500 - Child Support Modification (you are responsible for costs).
- $950 - Divorce Document Preparation (you are responsible for costs). This includes no representation beyond the initial consultation, drafting and providing you with customized paperwork to file with the court, and an in-depth session discussing the general process.
The Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC offers flat fees or contingent fees for most legal matters so you know exactly what you will be spending in legal fees even before you hire an attorney. The Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC also offers very reasonable hourly rates if that is what you prefer (see the lawyer fee/rate page for details). The Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC is willing to cap fees or to mix fee arrangements in order to represent you.
The Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC accepts credit cards for legal fees (if we are not representing you on a contingency basis).
If you hire the Law Office of Gregory Wilder, PLLC on an hourly basis, there will usually be no charge for phone calls to you or from you (although we do bill for emails, letters, etc). Phone calls are, of course, included in flat fee representation. However, if you hire us on a contingency basis, and the contingency percentages on recovery do not apply, for whatever reason (like if you fire us mid-representation and we cannot recover the contingency percentage), you will be charged for phone calls.