Grandparents’ Visitation Rights

When you became a grandparent, you expected to be able to spend time with your grandchildren. Hiring a lawyer to help secure visitation rights is a scenario that never occurred to you because, why would it? Reasons why this might become necessary are many and hard to plan for. The bottom line is, you’d like to see your grandchildren, and the children’s parents are trying to prevent that from happening.

Proving Grandparents’ Visitation Rights in Texas

For Texans, obtaining visitation rights to one’s grandchildren isn’t easy. In many ways, it’s just as difficult as obtaining custody of one’s grandchildren. In fact, there are numerous obstacles to overcome just in pursing the legal standing to file a case.

Before you even have the right to seek assistance from the court in the form of court-ordered visitation, you must attach to your request filed with the court a sworn statement that says that if your allegations are taken as true, denial of your access to your grandchild would significantly impair the child’s physical health or emotional well-being. If you cannot meet this requirement, the court must deny the relief you request and dismiss your suit without a further inquiry or hearing.

Once the court recognizes your right to bring a case, you must prove at least one of the following:

  • At least one of your grandchildren’s parents, whether biological or adoptive, must not have had their parental rights terminated. Whether it’s your child or their spouse, at least one must remain in possession of their parental rights.
  • You must show that, by denying you, the grandparent, access to their child, the parents are acting against their best interests. This is the same hurdle you had to clear to prove standing. Now, the children’s parents will challenge your claims and attempt to disprove them.
  • You, the grandparent requesting access, must show that your child:
    • Was incarcerated during the three months prior to filing their petition with the court
    • Has been deemed incompetent by a court of law
    • Has passed away
    • Has not been granted access to the child by the court

Obtaining visitation rights with your grandchildren can be an uphill battle, but it’s ultimately one that’s worthwhile. The attorneys at Orsinger, Nelson, Downing & Anderson have the knowledge and legal know-how to get the results you’re looking for.

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