The Texas Family Code allows Texas family courts to order parenting coordinators or facilitators in Sections 153.601 to 153.611. Both persons are appointed by the court on its own motion or by agreement of the parties. See Sec. 153.601. The goal of a parenting coordinator is to resolve parenting issues through confidential procedures, while a facilitator is tasked with resolving parenting issues through procedures that are not confidential. See id. A facilitator will develop a parenting plan to set out the terms of possession found to be in the best interest of the child. See id.
A parenting coordinator is appointed in “high-conflict cases” where the parents have demonstrated high levels discord and are having difficulty communicating. See id. In the appointments of either a parenting cocoordinator facilitator the court must find a that the case is either “high-conflict” or “good cause.” See 153.605 and 153.6051.
“The duties of the parenting coordinator are limited to matters that will aid the parties in: (1) identifying disputed issues;(2) reducing misunderstandings; (3) clarifying priorities; (4) exploring possibilities for problem solving; (5) developing methods of collaboration in parenting; (6) understanding parenting plans and reaching agreements about parenting issues to be included in a parenting plan; (7) complying with the court’s order regarding conservatorship or possession of and access to the child; (8) implementing parenting plans; (9) obtaining training regarding problem solving, conflict management, and parenting skills; and (10) settling disputes regarding parenting issues and reaching a proposed joint resolution or statement of intent regarding those disputes.” See 153.606.
“The court shall specify the duties of a parenting facilitator in the order appointing the parenting facilitator. The duties of the parenting facilitator are limited to those matters described with regard to a parenting coordinator under Section 153.606(a), except that the parenting facilitator may also monitor compliance with court orders.” See 153.6061.
Bird & Skibell, PC represents clients in divorces and suits affecting the parent child relationship. The attorneys at Bird & Skibell, PC regularly work with its clients on getting the correct parenting cocoordinator or facilitator appointed in its cases. Please contact the firm for a free initial consultation regarding the merits of your family law case.