Custody and Visitation Grandparents

Custody and Grandparent Visitation Rights

Grandparents are undoubtedly a very special part of the grandchildren. Often, the bond they share with them is ignored in a divorce. We understand that it is difficult for grandparents to seek custody of their grandchildren due to complicated legal issues and strong opposition from other parties to prevent such custody.

Grandparents’ rights are not defined in Texas law. In other words, grandparents have no legal standing to sue for visitation rights on the grounds that they have a right to see their grandchild. However, under certain circumstances, you may be able to seek appropriate relief from the court. If the court grants an order detailing the grandparents’ rights and obligations, such an order is fully enforceable.

If you are seeking to establish grandparent visitation rights, it is imperative to contact an experienced attorney who understands the legal process and will take the time to speak with you and identify a strategy to protect your rights as a grandparent. We understand that there may be emergency situations where both parents of a child have died and the appointment of grandparents or other family members as guardians or conservators of the child is necessary.

In Texas, a grandparent may require child custody or visitation rights but the court will only order it if:

  • At least one biological or adoptive parent still has standing parental rights,
  • The grandparent overcomes the presumption that a parent is acting in the best interests of the child by proving, under the combined weight of the evidence, that denial of possession or access to the child would significantly impair the child’s physical health or emotional well-being, and
  • The grandparent requesting possession or access to the child is the parent of a parent of the child and that parent is the parent of the child:

    The child’s father:
  • Has been incarcerated for three months prior to filing the application
  • Has been found incompetent by a court of law
  • Is dead
  • Has no actual or court-ordered visitation or custody rights

A biological or adoptive grandparent cannot require child custody or visitation rights if:

  • The child has been adopted, or is the subject of a pending adoption suit, by a person other than the child’s stepparent.

The parental rights of the parent of that grandchild have been terminated by a court order or by death.

In making a determination regarding grandparent rights, the court focuses on the best interests of the child. Due to their nature, these types of cases typically arise in a dysfunctional family situation. That is why you should seek the assistance of an experienced attorney to identify all of the reasons and compelling interests to establish your grandparental rights.

Please contact one of our Dallas-Fort Worth grandparent custody attorneys for a free initial consultation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to speak with you and recommend the best way to protect your parental rights. The experienced family law attorneys at K&M represent individuals in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex area, including Highland Park, Richardson, Plano, Allen, McKinney, Fort Worth, Frisco, and Dallas, Tarrant, Denton and Collin counties.