Grandparent visitation and custody rights in Texas

In this June 2018 podcast discussion about Texas divorce and family law matters, Mark Scroggins, board certified in family law, discusses the common issues involved when grandparents in Texas seek conservatorship, possession and access of grandchildren.

Grandparents to whom this information may apply may call Scroggins Legal in Plano, Texas by dialing (469) 626-5220.

Good friends and neighbors share information with one another who may be looking for answers to their questions about Texas divorce, family law, and in this case, grandparents’ rights. Scroggins Legal appreciates your help in sharing this podcast where you may find it in social media or our firm’s newsletter.

 

Custody, visitation and grandparents’ rights in Texas family law:

  • The importance of grandparents in the lives of growing children
    • Grandparents can talk to children differently than a primary care giver
    • A grandparent can tell stories with a wealth of historical knowledge
    • Most grandparents are well established and stable in their lives
  • Strict standards for grandparents seeking visitation considering Troxel v. Granville
    • 2005 US Supreme Court Case striking down constitutional rights of grandparents
    • The “Harm Standard” in Texas grandparent visitation cases
    • Expert testimony in establishing denial of visitation would harm the child
  • Situations in which grandparents can request possession and access of a child
    • Parents are divorced, and visitation may be in the best interest of the child
    • The child was abused or neglected by the parent
    • The parent is incarcerated, determined incompetent or is dead
    • The parent-child relationship is terminated by the court’s order
    • The Child has lived with the grandparent for six months or longer
  • Grandparents procedure for seeking conservatorship, possession and access
    • Standing in a Suit Affecting a Parent Child Relationship (SAPCR)
    • What to expect in a hearing or trial on grandparents’ petitions
    • No access to court relief if the child was adopted by others

 

Texas is strict when it comes to the fundamental rights of parents. When the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2005 in the case of Troxel v. Granville, that parents have a fundamental right to raise their children without interference, the rights of grandparents were implicated. In Texas, one of the strictest states for grandparents seeking rights to grandchildren, there are limited situations in which a grandparent can get court-ordered conservatorship, possession and access of a child.