Texas Grandparents Rights

Texas Grandparents Rights

Mar 27, 2024
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A divorce can be unsettling for children in many different ways and can cause anxiety and confusion once schedules and living situations are rearranged. One of the often overlooked aspects of separation is the impact that it has on other extended family relationships. 

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The connection that grandparents share with their grandchildren can help keep the balance and feeling of normalcy in the event of a divorce. Sometimes, children may even end up with a grandparent for a short or extended period. That said, it can be difficult to gain access to grandchildren, especially if the parents are unwilling to allow this.

If you have concerns about your rights as a grandparent, never hesitate to speak with a family law attorney in Fort Worth

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We put you and your family first! Whether you are facing divorce, seeking adoption, or have a child custody case, you can rely on our legal team. Contact us today for a case review or legal consultation.

What Visitation Rights do Grandparents have in Texas?

So what are the Texas grandparent’s rights under the law? The legal rights of grandparents are described in detail in the Texas Family Code. The code explains when and how grandparents have the right to petition the court to establish visitation time with their grandchildren. They can also request custody of their grandchildren as well, but submitting a request does not guarantee that they will be granted access. The courts generally allow the parents to decide when and how often grandparents can spend time with their grandchildren, but the court may intervene in certain situations. 

 

Requirements for Grandparent Visitation, Access, or Possession 

Unfortunately, parents can usually deny grandparents visitation rights. However, while the state prefers that the parents determine what access grandparents have to their grandchildren, there are scenarios when parents may be found unsuitable to make these decisions. 

In Texas, grandparents could be granted visitation, possession, or even custody of their grandchildren if they are the parent of the child’s parent and the child’s parent:

  • Has died
  • Is incarcerated for at least three months before the petition is filed
  • Has been found by the court to be incompetent 
  • Does not have court-ordered possession of the child
  • Court has found that the parent is not acting in the best interest of the child

There are many other scenarios and nuances when it comes to a grandparent requesting visitation or custody of their grandchildren, and timing plays a critical role in the court’s decision to grant or deny access. 

The burden of proof is on the grandparents to show that their grandchildren are better off having visitation and even custodial rights, and this is difficult to prove since the courts will advocate keeping children with their parents in most cases. For this reason, it is important to work with a trusted family lawyer who understands the challenges and the process of grandparents who are attempting to gain access to their grandchildren. 

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If you are concerned about losing or gaining the right to visit with your grandchildren in the event of a divorce, it is helpful to understand your rights. At MBH Fort Worth Family Law, we are committed to working with families who are seeking additional visitation for their grandchildren. 

Call us today at 817-900-8330 or contact us online to schedule a free initial consultation and to learn more about your options. 

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Constance Mims

Constance Mims has over fifteen years of experience practicing exclusively family law. Mrs. Mims is Board Certified in Family Law, by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. She is Collaborative Law certified and is a shrewd negotiator, not to mention her experience in the most challenging child custody, child support, spousal maintenance, alimony, prenuptial agreements, and divorce issues, both in court and in the appellate arena.

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This page has been written, edited, and reviewed by a team of legal writers following our comprehensive editorial guidelines. This page was approved by Founding Partner, Constance Mims who has over 15 years of experience practicing exclusively family law. Mrs. Mims is Board Certified in Family Law, by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization..

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