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McKinney Child Custody Lawyers Helping With Grandparents’ Rights
Under Texas law, it is possible for grandparents to obtain custody and visitation rights under limited circumstances. As a general rule, the courts prefer not to get involved in intra-family disputes, and grandparents do not have a basic legal right to see their grandchildren. However, when granting custody or visitation rights to a grandparent is in the best interests of the children involved, it is possible for grandparents to secure formal legal rights. Contact a McKinney child custody lawyer if you have questions or concerns about your specific circumstances.
In addition, in many circumstances, parents and grandparents will want to establish formal rights for the grandparents to make decisions on behalf of the parents’ children. This could be the case, for example, if the grandparents are the children’s primary caretakers and need to seek emergency medical attention, take the children to dentists’ appointments, or enroll the children in extracurricular activities. When everyone is on the same page, establishing grandparents’ rights is a much simpler (and less-formal) process, and it can provide important peace of mind for all family members involved.
Establishing Grandparents’ Visitation Rights in Texas
In order to obtain visitation rights (referred to as “possessory conservatorship” in Texas) with respect to your grandchildren, you must be able to demonstrate that establishing formal visitation rights is in your grandchildren’s best interests. The Texas courts consider a number of factors in deciding what is in a child’s best interests, including the parents’ fitness and desire to raise their child, the parents’ and grandparents’ work schedules, geographic proximity of the grandparents to the child’s home and school, and the child’s age and preferences. In addition, under Texas law, grandparents can only be awarded visitation rights if:
- The parents are divorced;
- A parent has abused or neglected the child;
- A parent has been incarcerated, found incompetent, or died;
- A court has issued an order terminating the parent-child relationship; or,
- The child has lived with the grandparents for at least six months.
Establishing Grandparents’ Custody Rights in Texas
Similar to visitation rights, the Texas courts will only grant grandparents custody rights (or “managing conservatorship” rights) under limited circumstances. Securing custody as a grandparent requires going to court to terminate the parents’ natural custody rights; and, once again, requires a clear showing that the proposed course of action is in the best interests of the children involved.
Due to the numerous and complex issues in contested cases involving grandparents’ rights, if you are interested in seeking visitation or custody of your grandchildren, it is important that you discuss your situation with an experienced family law attorney. Our attorneys have years of experience representing clients in a broad range of family-related legal matters, and we can help you choose the best path forward.
Schedule a Free Initial Consultation With our McKinney Child Custody Lawyers Today
If you would like more information about grandparents’ visitation and custody rights in Texas, we encourage you to schedule a free initial consultation with experienced McKinney child custody lawyers. To request an appointment at our McKinney, TX law offices, please call (214) 726-1450 or send us a message online today.