‘In Chambers’ Interview Amid a Little one Custody Dispute
“In chambers” or “in camera” refers to a hearing in the privacy of the judge’s office. These meetings usually take place in order to examine particularly sensitive or private information outside of the formal courtroom setting. One of the purposes of such an interview is to determine whether or not a child has a preference regarding with whom the child will reside. Such interviews may be conducted based on the motion of a party, or an amicus or an ad litem attorney. The trial court, as always, has the duty to act as a gatekeeper, as demonstrated by the US Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit’s recent opinion, filed April 25, 2022, in In the Interest of JN, LN, KN and MN, Children, 2022 Tex. apartment Lexis 2678.
TEX. fam. CODE Section 153.009 provides in pertinent part as follows: