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Do Children Need Their Own Legal Representation in a Texas Divorce?

In my years as a Texas divorce attorney, I have worked with hundreds of parents who put the interests of their children first, regardless of the degree of conflict within their divorce. However, if a court finds parents unable to put the interests of their children before their personal disputes, it may order some level of legal representation specifically to look out for the children.

In certain cases, the courts appoint an attorney ad litem, who provides full legal representation for the children in a divorce. More often, a judge may appoint an amicus attorney, who works essentially in an advisory capacity to help the courts address the best interests of children in divorce. In accordance with the Texas statutes pertaining to special appointments and social studies, an amicus attorney conducts a thorough investigation of the issues of children in a number of ways, including interviews with all parties of interest, including:

  • The children, as long as they are 4 years of age or older
  • The parents
  • Other parties who have significant knowledge of the history and condition of the children

When the courts appoint an amicus attorney, this lawyer automatically gains access to all records pertaining to the children. Only by gathering all the information that affects the case can the amicus attorney make an informed recommendation to the judge.

Even though amicus attorneys do not directly represent the children in divorce proceedings, they do have significant rights within the proceedings — from attending all hearings or trials to controlling the access of other attorneys to the children. If the courts appoint an amicus attorney to help resolve child custody and other issues in your divorce, you need a Texas child custody lawyer who can help ensure the amicus attorney has access to the necessary information to best address your children’s needs.

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Robert Reid McInvale
Attorney at Law

Robert Reid McInvale is an experienced family law attorney with a comprehensive practice in Houston. He provides dedicated and strong advocacy for his clients, helping them with all the issues surrounding their divorce, separation, child custody, and other marriage and family matters. Attorney McInvale—Reid to clients and friends—seemed destined for a law career. Born while his father was attending Emory University Law School, Reid grew up in Manchester, GA. His father was the city attorney for many years, as well as head of the Manchester Chamber of Commerce. It is in the family blood to become lawyers and help people get justice. U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice John Marshall is part of the McInvale family tree.

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