If you’re a Texas resident and you’ve had a significant hand in raising your grandchildren, the courts may allow you to see the children regularly even if their parents are experiencing significant changes. Here are some things you should know if you want to make sure you have access to your grandchildren under child custody laws.
Circumstances for grandparent access
If at least one of the child’s biological or adoptive parents has not terminated their parental rights or the grandparent can prove that the child’s parent(s) are not acting in the child’s best interests, then the courts may allow the grandparents to obtain child custody. Grandparents may also have to prove that the child’s emotional or physical well-being will be jeopardized if the child is not allowed to see their grandparents. The closer the grandparent is to their grandchild, the more likely they are to be awarded custody or given significant visitation.
A grandparent may be granted child custody in Texas if the primary parent of the child has been incarcerated. The children may also be permitted to live with the grandparents if the parent(s) of the child have been deemed incompetent in court.
If the children already have a close relationship with the grandparents, the grandparents will likely be awarded custody if the child’s custodial parent passes away. In cases in which the parent of the child is still alive, the grandparent will have to present substantial evidence that they are the best parental figure to care for the child. Grandparents who are seeking custody of their grandchildren might have to prove that their own adult child is an unfit parent.