+0
The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as a possessory conservator or as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

Given the sentence above, how is the word "intended" used?
I do not know if the word "intended" is supposed to be applied ONLY "to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as possessory conservator"?

or

Does "intended" apply to both "to guide the courts in ordering...." and "as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator"?


I read it as such:
The guidelines established in the standard possession order are:
1_ "intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as possessory conservator"

2_ "as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator"


Given the nature of this reading, the use of the word "intended" means a great deal.

Either which way, if I needed to prove something like this in court, how would a person go about proving such a thing?


Thank you for your help.

+0
modern cobra 86Either which way, if I needed to prove something like this in court, how would a person go about proving such a thing?

Hire a lawyer experienced in these matters.

In everyday English, not necessarily legal English, "intended / guidance" means that it is the goal or objective. It does not mean that the terms and conditions arranged for these two parties, the possessory conservator and the joint managing conservator are obligatory, the agreement will depend on the judge and the circumstances.. But the intention is to have guidelines for both., not exclusively the first. But I am not a lawyer, and legal expertise is required to parse it.

+0

This sentence is hard to understand, and it seems to me that it may be faultily written. The "as ... as ..." parallelism appears to indicate the following structure:

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named:

(i) as a possessory conservator
or
(ii) as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

At the moment, I don't see another way to interpret what is actually written. However, I wonder whether this actually makes sense. It seems to me that it could be supposed to mean:

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended to guide the courts in ordering:

(i) the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as a possessory conservator
and/or
(ii) the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

Do not rely on my opinion. Please take legal advice if this is important in real life.

Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
1 2
Comments  

Thank you for your answer.

I do have an attorney but the legal use of the word stems from their common meanings.
That is what brings me here, to figure out exactly how the word "intended" is used in the given sentence.

AlpheccaStarsIt does not mean that the terms and conditions arranged for these two parties, the possessory conservator and the joint managing conservator are obligatory, the agreement will depend on the judge and the circumstances.

I am not sure exactly what you mean in that sentence.

The sentence I quoted is a state "statute". It is what the court (is supposed to) uses in making its "orders" that apply to the parties involved. There are no agreements within that statute.

My question centers around the reading (or interpretation) of the statute. There are many contrary/contradicting court rulings when it comes to what the court is allowed (by statute) to do in regards to "possession" when it comes to a parent who is named "joint managing conservator".
They all seem to center around the reading (interpretation) of this one statute.

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as a possessory conservator or as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

For example:
If the court reads that the "standard possession order" is "intended" as a "minimum possession for a joint managing conservator".
You generally get court orders that say something along the lines of ... "standard possession order is intended to guide the court in making a decision for possession, however, the court is not bound by those rules"


On the other hand, if the court reads it in this manner:
"standard possession order is the minimum possession for a parent named joint managing conservator and is only intended to be used as a guide for the court when determining terms and conditions of possession to a parent named as possessory conservator"

I tend to believe the second version is the correct interpretation.
A joint managing conservator is a parent who has NOT been found to have harmed the child.
A possessory conservator is a parent who is not eligible to be a Joint managing conservator because they have been found by the court to be at fault for something.


I find it confusing that the statute would allow a judge (court) to limit the possession of a parent who has not been found to harm the child in any way.

I hope that I explained that correctly and that it makes sense.

Teachers: We supply a list of EFL job vacancies

The sentence I quoted is a state statute.
Unfortunately, I have to go by the exact wording of the statute and cannot add or subtract any meaning or leave any words unused.

There are contradictory rulings made by courts with regard to this statute and it all depends on how the court reads and interprets the statute.

For some clarification, I can offer that a Joint Managing Conservator is a parent who has NOT been found to have harmed the children. A possessory conservator is a parent who is prohibited from being named as Joint Managing Conservator (JMC) for one infraction or another.

The judge [court] uses this statute when making his or her order on possession of a child to a parent (either JMC or possessory)
I personally find it hard to believe that a parent named JMC can have his or her possession of the children restricted or denied, however, the courts have interpreted the statute to mean that on occasion.


It seems to come down to the word "INTENDED". The courts seem to look at "intended" to mean that there is some wiggle room for the judge to make a decision other than "standard possession order" as the "minimum possession for a parent named JMC"


Since it is an interpretation of the sentence, it is an ENGLISH question more than a legal question.


I hope that makes sense.

Given your understanding of the terminology, are you able to confirm that the following interpretation (that I mentioned in my original reply) does not make sense (as it seems to me that it does not)?

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named:

(i) as a possessory conservator
or
(ii) as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

It occurred to me on reading the sentence again that another interpretation is:

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended:

i) to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as a possessory conservator
or
ii) as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

In this interpretation the word "intended" still governs (ii), but the words "guide the court" do not. I can't see any interpretation in which the word "intended" does not in one way or another govern (ii).

Thank you for your reply.
Given the several court rulings on the matter (that seem to contradict one another), it is apparent that the sentence needs clarification to be effective.

My question was asked in regards to stressing the term "intended" because several rulings relied on that word to come to the conclusion that the court has discretion in limiting possession (less than standard possession) to a parent named as Joint Managing Conservator (JMC). My understanding is that "standard possession" is the "minimum possession", at least in my sense of the plain language used in the statute.


I personally, cannot explain how the court(s) have come to this conclusion, so I am looking to anyone who can help me better understand their point of view OR help me better explain how the court got this wrong.


I hope that makes sense.

Thank you

Site Hint: Check out our list of pronunciation videos.

Before looking at the interpretations of individual words, I feel it is important to be clear about the overall structure of the sentence. IF the interpretation is as follows:

The guidelines established in the standard possession order are intended:
i) to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as a possessory conservator
or
ii) as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator.

THEN the "guide the courts" part, which definitely would imply wiggle-room, does not apply to (ii). However, my feeling is that the word "guidelines" alone gives a sense of wiggle-room, and this may be enhanced by the seeming lack of force or certainty in the word "intended".

By the way, the following interpretation, that you suggested, does not seem possible to me. "... are as the minimum possession ..." does not seem to flow properly. Even if it was possible, the word "guidelines" would still apply to (2).

modern cobra 86The guidelines established in the standard possession order are:
1_ "intended to guide the courts in ordering the terms and conditions for possession of a child by a parent named as possessory conservator"
2_ "as the minimum possession for a joint managing conservator"

I see your point and it seems to make sense that ... the standard possession order (SPO) are intended: to both (i) and (ii).

I am not so much worried about the word "guidelines" in the legal sense. From my understanding, the courts are bound to the guidelines.
It is a convoluted mess in which no one [appellate courts] seems to agree.

The Texas Supreme Court has rulings that apply to these matters, however, they apply indirectly.
Meaning that Tex. Supreme Court (TSC)has yet to hear a case on this exact question of law.

What the TSC did rule on are aspects that:

  • "By focusing on the language enacted, we encourage the legislature to enact unambiguous statutes, we discourage courts from usurping the legislature's role of deciding what the law should be, and we enable citizens to rely on the laws as published without having to worry that they may carry some hidden meaning"... "ensures that ordinary citizens are able to rely on the language of a statute to mean what it says."
  • "words and phrases shall be read in context and construed according to rules of grammar and common usage"
  • "We rely on the plain meaning of the text as expressing legislative intent unless a different meaning is supplied by legislative definition or is apparent from the context, or the plain meaning leads to absurd results


When the text is ambiguous the TSC ruled:

  • "We should not give one provision a meaning out of harmony or inconsistent with other provisions, although it might be susceptible to such a construction standing alone"
  • "If two statutes are in conflict, "we will construe the different provisions in a way that harmonizes rather than conflicts.""
  • "noting that we presume the Legislature "chooses a statute's language with care, including each word chosen for a purpose, while purposefully omitting words not chosen"

Without getting too deep into the statutes, I can say that there are 4 (four) types of conservatorships (custody).
1) Sole Managing Conservator (meaning that one parent has all the rights to the child... generally the other parent would be named Possessory Conservator or have her/his parental rights stripped)
2) Joint Managing Conservators (JMC) (meaning that both parents share the rights to the child... meaning both parents are found to be fit and in the child's best interest)
3) Possessory Conservator (meaning that the parent has been found to have committed some wrongdoing that overcame the presumption that (s)he are supposed to be named as JMC)
4) Parental rights are stripped

It is my reading of the statute that Possessory Conservator can have her/his possession restricted to keep in line with the best interest of the child (in other words if (s)he has hurt the child in any way (abuse for instance), then the courts can restrict possession to keep the child safe, however, still keep the parental rights intact.

I am trying to figure out how and why the district courts [lower civil court] (and some appellate courts) can interpret this to allow the court to limit possession of a child to a parent named as JMC.

SPO is the typical possession held by most divorced parents, 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends of the month, half of the holidays, and most of the summer.

I know my thoughts are scattered, but I hope that makes sense.

Thank you

Show more