When divorce occurs and families with children break apart, the visitation rights of grandparents often take a major hit. If you are a grandparent living in Texas and have been denied access to your grandchildren, there are things you can do to help your situation. All states have family laws addressing the right of grandparents to continue having contact with their grandchildren. The courts believe loving and caring family relationships are healthy for the child and will help grandparents recover their visitation rights if appropriate.
Grandparents cannot simply ask that they be granted visitation rights. They must petition the proper Texas court, thereby formally requesting visitation privileges. The presiding judge will then determine if maintaining a relationship with the grandparents will serve the child's best interests.
In addition to simply being denied access by one of the child's parents, grandparents can also pursue visitation rights in other situations. Here are some examples:
-- The death or one or both parents-- One or both parents have been imprisoned-- One or both parents have been declared incompetent-- The child is a victim of abuse or neglect-- One or both parents' parental rights have been terminated-- The grandchild resided with the grandparent for six months
Being able to prove that an ongoing relationship will benefit the grandchild can greatly improve a grandparent's chance of winning visitation rights. Working with a family law attorney is another way to improve the chance of success. An attorney serving the Fort Worth, Texas, area can help grandparents prepare for courtroom procedures as well as assist them in gathering any documentation that they may need.
Source: The Attorney General of Texas, "Grandparents' Page," accessed Aug. 12, 2015