Lake Jackson Visitation Attorneys
Compassionate Legal Advocates Protecting Your Parental Rights
In Texas, a visitation order, formally called a “possession order,” establishes when each parent has the right to spend time with a child. Texas has several types of possession orders in place depending on the parent’s situation:
- Standard Possession Order
- Modified Possession Orders
- Possession Orders for a Child Under 3 Years Old
- Supervised Possession Orders
Our legal team at JM Davis Law PLLC seeks to protect your rights as a parent in all your family matters, especially when it comes to your right to spend time with your child. For compassionate and professional legal counsel in your Lake Jackson visitation case, contact an experienced lawyer at JM Davis Law PLLC today.
Standard and Modified Possession Orders
The first type of possession order in Texas, Standard Possession, will be ordered by the court based on the best interests of a child above the age of 3. A Standard Possession Order establishes that the parents may have possession of the child whenever they both agree. If they do not agree, the noncustodial parent has the right to possession of the child during certain times depending on whether the parents live within 100 miles of each other or more than 100 miles apart.
When the parents live within 100 miles of each other, the noncustodial parent may have possession on:
- 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends of every month;
- Thursday evenings during the school year;
- alternating holidays; and
- an extended 30 days during summer vacation.
On the other hand, if the parents live more than 100 miles apart, the noncustodial parent may have possession for:
- 1st, 3rd, and 5th weekends of every month or reduced to 1 weekend per month;
- no mid-week visits;
- alternating holidays; and
- an extended 42 days during summer vacation and every spring break.
If both parents decide that the Standard Possession Order is inappropriate for their family, or if the case is contested, they can work with an attorney to propose a modified order that may better meet the specific needs of their family. Common modifications parents may propose include:
- modified alternating weekends;
- modified split weeks;
- modified day visits (no overnight stays).
Possession Orders for Children Under 3 Years of Age
The law considers children under the age of 3 to be special circumstances warranting its own type of possession order to best address the young child’s best interest. Both parents may still agree to use the Standard Possession Order, but they may also agree to use a different possession schedule. Parents can draft their own agreement and submit it to the judge for approval, or, if they cannot agree, the judge will make the final decision.
Supervised Possession Orders
If a judge is concerned about the child’s safety, they can order that a parent’s time with a child be supervised by a family member, trained neutral third party, or agency. Note that a private agency often involves separate fees the parent may be required to pay out of pocket.
In rare situations, a judge may order that a parent have no visits. This option may be ordered when visiting with the parent, even with supervision, would be physically or emotionally harmful to the child. This could be due to a discovery of family violence or other dangerous factors.
Contact JM Davis Law PLLC for Legal Support Immediately
In Texas, a possession order can be ordered by a judge as part of a:
- divorce case;
- lawsuit affecting the parent-child relationship;
- paternity case; or
- family violence protective order case.
A possession order can be changed by a judge in a modification case if circumstances have significantly changed, though there are specific requirements a parent must meet to petition for modification.
If you are currently involved in a custody battle involving visitation negotiations, contact an experienced attorney for legal counsel. As Texas implements various different possession orders, it is best to have a lawyer beside you to ensure you arrange for the appropriate possession order and protect your interests as a parent. JM Davis Law PLLC has years of experience helping parents maintain parent-child relationships, especially in visitation situations.