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Disclaimer:
  The legal information provided on this website is the product of Legal Aid NorthWest Texas (LANWT). None of the legal information on this website is associated with or the product of the Office of the Attorney General of Texas or any of its employees.

GRANDPARENTS’ RIGHTS

Q. My parents would like to take my children for the weekend or during part of the summer. Do I need the custodial parent’s permission to do this?

A. Usually no. During your periods of possession you have the right to let the children visit their grandparents, spend the night at a friend’s home, or any other such activity as long as they are returned to the other parent on time. You may allow your parents to take the children on a vacation, even out of state, during the summer.

Q. What rights do grandparents have in Texas?

A. There are no automatic grandparents’ rights in Texas. Unless they go to court, grandparents have no rights to visit the grandchildren. This does not mean they cannot see the grandchildren. It means they must have the approval of one of the parents. Under some circumstances, grandparents can obtain a court order to visit grandchildren over the objection of the parents.

Q. What rights can the grandparents get in court?

A. Currently, the grandparents may petition the court for visitation and the judge can grant specific periods of visitation over the objections of the parents.

Q. Can grandparents get custody of my children over my objection?

A. Maybe. Grandparents can petition the court for custody of your children if the children have lived with them for at least six months and they file the petition for custody within 90 days of the date the children were no longer living with them. They may also petition for custody if there is an emergency that endangers the health or wellbeing of the children. Grandparents have the burden of proof to demonstrate that the children are better off with the grandparents and must also prove that living with a parent would be harmful to the child.

However, they have the burden of proof and it is a difficult burden to meet. It is not enough to simply show that the children are better off with the grandparents; they must also prove that living with a parent would be harmful to the child.