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Do Stepparents Get Visitation in Texas?

 Posted on December 29, 2022 in Family Law

TX family lawMarriage and divorce are complex subjects, and when children are involved they become even more difficult. Blended families (made up of children belonging to one parent or the other and often also involving children born of both parents) are among the most complex arrangements of all - especially when parents of blended families get divorced.

Divorced parents of stepchildren have often spent many years integrating these children into their lives without formally adopting them. Yet while the lack of a formal legal relationship with the child does not minimize the history of care, love, and respect between a stepparent and stepchild, it can make it very difficult to seek visitation with the stepchild after a divorce, especially if the relationship between the stepparent and the stepchild’s biological parent is now hostile. If this situation sounds familiar and you are a Texas stepparent seeking visitation rights, read on and then contact a family lawyer for help.

Seeking Visitation as a Stepparent in Texas

Once a stepparent has gotten divorced from a child’s biological parent, Texas law views the stepparent as an interested third party - that is, someone who has no automatic visitation rights but who may petition a family court to request visitation. Because these petitions often involve hostile relationships between former spouses, judges are usually left to make the decision after looking at the evidence in a particular case. The factors the judge will consider include, but are not limited to:

  • The length of the relationship between the stepparent and stepchild
  • The strength of the emotional bond between the stepparent and stepchild
  • The role the stepparent played in the stepchild’s life during the parents’ marriage (i.e., was the stepparent a primary caregiver?)
  • Whether the stepparent previously was involved in things like extracurricular activities, parent-teacher conferences, religious ceremonies, etc.
  • How a lack of visitation could affect the stepchild’s mental, emotional, and physical well-being
  • Whether the stepparent has contributed financially to the support of the stepchild
  • The reasons the stepparent is seeking visitation
  • Whether the stepchild wants to spend time with the stepparent (if age appropriate)

Schedule a Consultation with a San Antonio, TX Stepparent Visitation Lawyer

At Brandon Wong & Associates, we understand how important it is to seek legal protection for your relationship with a child you love and have cared for many years. We will help you explore your options for pursuing visitation as a stepparent and assist you with any other family law matters you may have. Call our Bexar County, TX stepparent visitation lawyers today at 210-201-3832 to schedule a confidential consultation.



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