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Grandparents' rights in Texas-Part I

In Texas, as in many other states throughout the U.S., a grandparent's visitation rights are limited. This means a grandparent does not have a constitutional right to see his or her grandchildren. There are a few ways, however, that a grandparent can receive custody of a grandchild. Parents may sign a power of attorney granting the grandparents custody. A grandparent may also file a lawsuit requesting legal custody of the child.

If a grandparent wants legal custody of the child and files a lawsuit in a Texas court, the grandparent must fulfill certain conditions. The child must have lived with the grandparent for at least six months. If the grandchild now lives with another individual, Texas family law requires that the grandparent file the lawsuit within three months of the child moving out of the grandparent's home.

Other ways to assert his or her grandparents' rights include having the court name the grandparent as the child's guardian, proving that the child is being harmed in his or her current living situation or having both child's parents, a surviving parent or the child's court-appointed conservator agree that the child should live with his or her grandparents

In Texas, family law requires that the child's parents agree that the child live with the grandparent. A managing conservator of the child must also agree with this arrangement. There are instances where a third party has filed a court suit seeking custody of the child. When considering child custody, the courts always consider and make their ruling with the best interests of the child in mind. If present conditions put a child in jeopardy or danger, new living arrangements will be made.

Source: TexasLawHelp.org, "Grandparents' Rights," Accessed on June 25, 2015

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