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State Bar of Texas

“Grandparent Rights”

Jerry W. Tidwell, Jr.

In Texas, there is no specific “grandparent rights” statute that grants grandparents automatic custody or visitation rights. However, under certain circumstances, grandparents may be able to seek custody or visitation of their grandchildren through the courts.

Texas law allows grandparents to file a lawsuit requesting access to their grandchildren if:

  1. The parents are divorced, and the grandparent’s child (the parent of the grandchild) has been appointed as a conservator of the child.
  2. The parent of the child has died, been incarcerated, or been declared incompetent.
  3. The child has lived with the grandparent for at least six months, and the grandparent is being denied access to the child.

In these cases, the court will consider the best interests of the child when deciding whether to grant access to the grandparent.

It’s important to note that the burden of proof is on the grandparent to prove that access to the child is in the child’s best interest. The court may consider factors such as the relationship between the grandparent and the child, the reasons for the denial of access, and the impact that granting access would have on the child’s physical and emotional well-being.

Overall, while there are no automatic “grandparent rights” in Texas, grandparents may still have legal options to seek custody or visitation of their grandchildren through the courts under certain circumstances.

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