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Texas and grandparent rights

Texas family courts always attempt to uphold the best interests of the child in their decisions. If grandparents can show that their presence in their grandchild's life is beneficial to their interests, then the court may accede to a request for visitation rights or even the award of custody. The grandparent must be prepared to fulfill specific conditions required by the court, and greater authority over the child will require greater proof that the proposed course of action lies within the child's best interests.

A grandparent might seek to obtain custody over their grandchild if both their parents are deceased, found incompetent for some reason, incarcerated or otherwise permanently incapacitated. If the grandparent wishes to take the child over the wishes of the parent, then they will have to demonstrate that the parent is in some way substantially unfit and that taking the child from their parent is in their best interests. This is generally perceived to be a difficult task, as the court will side with the parent whenever possible.

Texas supports the right of grandparents to regular visits with their grandchild. However, the right to request visitation after the child has been adopted by somebody outside the immediate family is not assured.

While every state has some form of statute that allows grandparent visitation, the requirements vary. It is always helpful to be able to show the court that the grandparents who are petitioning for this arrangement have had some sort of prior relationship with their grandchild. A family law attorney can outline what other types of evidence will be appropriate.

Article Source Web Link: Findlaw, "Requirements for Awarding Grandparent Visitation and Custody", Nov. 23, 2016

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Bruce Turner

In addition to his law degree, Bruce Turner has a master's degree in tax law and is Board Certified in Commercial Real Estate Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization.

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