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Can Texas grandparents ask the courts for visitation rights?

On Behalf of | Oct 14, 2022 | Family Law

Grandparents often play a very important role in the lives of their children’s kids. Maybe you provide after-school babysitting or you have allowed the family to move into your home because rent is too high for the family to afford. If you have a strong relationship with your grandchildren, your influence on their life will likely be a positive one.

Unfortunately, you may find yourself struggling to maintain that connection because the parent of your grandchild has an issue with you or the other parent of the grandchildren. Breakups and divorces are among the scenarios in which grandparents may find themselves frozen out of their grandchildren’s lives.

Do you have the option of asking for the help of the Texas family courts?

State law does allow for grandparent visitation. In theory, grandparents can ask the Texas family courts to award them visitation rights when they cannot maintain their relationship informally. You typically need proof that you have a pre-existing relationship with your grandchildren and that your presence in their lives is beneficial.

The text messages you’ve exchanged with them, the pictures from your holiday celebrations and even financial records showing how you have helped support their needs when their parents could not can all help convince a Texas family law judge that you play an important role in your grandchildren’s lives. If the judge believes that giving you access to the children would be in their best interest, then you can potentially have a court order granting you time with the children.

Will a visitation hearing damage your relationship further?

Some grandparents are nervous about the idea of taking the parent of their grandchildren to family court. They fear that the process may do more harm than good.

While some parents will resent grandparents who assert their rights and then follow through with being an active part in a child’s life, most will eventually see the value of your presence. They may even come to respect that you took every necessary stuff to remain a part of the children’s lives. Even if they are unhappy about your decisions, the parent with primary custody will still have to abide by the court order and allow you to maintain your relationship with your grandchildren.

Understanding the Texas rules about grandparents’ rights can help you show up for the children in your life who may desperately need your support.