Thursday, September 10, 2009
Statement of 12 yr. old & older says where he/she wants to live is gone!
After making changes to this section (Look up Section 153) over the years, such as lowered the age to 10 then the next Legislative session raising it back to 12, now the statement that allowed a child 12 years or older to state which parent he/she would like to live with is GONE! Now the child can meet with the judge in chambers and talk to the judge. With the courts being overwhelmed by pending family law cases, this change is probably going to slow down the process even more. Now the judge must make time in his/her schedule to meet with children. And someone must bring the children to the courthouse. I doubt that any judge will be pleased if a child misses school for this private interview. The judges in Harris County do NOT want kids to miss school. Since schools end at 3pm, then the judge will have perhaps from 4-5 pm Monday - Friday to interview children privately in their chambers. Say you need to go the Harris County and you live close to the Woodlands, it can easily take an hour to drive from that part of town to Downtown Houston. Some Harris County judges have refused to interview minor children in the past. I am interested to see how the Harris County judges handle this change!