Getting Divorced? Courses That Can Be Ordered by the Court During the Process

If you are considering getting a divorce or are getting divorced, you should know that a court can order you and/or your spouse to take a course for a variety of reasons.

Many Family Law courts require parties of a child to take a Parenting Education and Family Stabilization Course, also known as a “parenting” course. Some courts only require the parties to take a “parenting” course if custody of a child is a contested issue.

These courses are helpful for divorcing parents or parties involved in a suit affecting a parent-child relationship (SAPCR). Frequently, parties experience conflict regarding access, visitation, exchange of a child and custody of a child. These courses help in providing an understanding of a child’s perspective in these situations, avoiding conflict, how to handle conflict and methods of communicating with the other party and the child that are productive and healthy, not destructive and damaging.

The course’s content can vary to some extent, so it is important to check with your attorney which course is the best for your situation. If you have a hearing frequently, a judge will order you to attend a specific course. Many of the courts post the parenting course they require on their websites. Some courts require parties to attend courses in person, while others allow parties to participate in online courses. Courses can be from four to eight hours or more depending on what the court requires. The courses provide a “certificate” upon completion of the course that needs to be filed with the court.

Courts can order Anger Management Courses, Battering Intervention and Prevention programs and a course of treatment with a mental health professional in accordance with section 153.010 of the Texas Family Code. This can be very helpful to redirect parties toward healthier mental health to make a significant difference in their own lives and that of their children. Make sure that whatever course you take is approved by your court.