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This legal research guide provides information on the rights of grandparents in regard to their grandchildren, including custody issues.
Last Updated: Jul 3, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

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Research from Home

If you have a TexLaw ID, you can check out an OverDrive eBook title or access our remote databases. Don't have a TexLaw ID? Texas residents can register for a TexLaw ID from home! Learn more about how to register from home.

Below is an eBook title that may help you with your research on grandparents' rights.

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Texas family law practice and procedure - Matthew Bender
Call Number: KFT 505 F35 1997
Publication Date: 2014
Texas Family Law for the practitioner, covering Conservatorship and Guardianship, premarital agreements, divorce, custody issues, spousal support, grounds, and valuing community assets. Includes sample petitions and motions, including initial attorney-client documents, as well as references to the most current State Bar CLE materials, legal periodicals, and ALR Annotations.


Resources at the State Law Library

Below are some of the library resources that can provide further guidance on this topic. The Texas State Law Library has many other resources in addition to the highlights we present below. Please call us at (512) 463-1722 if you have any questions about these materials.

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Child custody, visitation and support in Texas - Traci Truly
Call Number: REF DESK KFT 547 T7 2008
ISBN: 9781572486560
Publication Date: 2008
A self-help child custody guide written in everyday language. It includes ready to use forms with step-by-step instructions. The guide provides a brief overview of child custody issues and how to research the law. It also discusses the role of an attorney and factors to consider when deciding whether or not to hire legal representation. While focused mainly on parent/child issues, grandparents are discussed throughout the title.

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Grandparents' rights in Texas - Jimmy L. Verner
Call Number: KFT 547 V47 2013
ISBN: 1450538053
Publication Date: 2013
This title by Texas attorney Jimmy Verner, Jr. looks at grandparents' rights in Texas. Specific chapters cover statute terminology, grandparents' rights under Texas law, Troxel v. Granville in the Texas Supreme Court, and Troxel v. Granville in the Texas Legislature.

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Grandparents' rights: your legal guide to protecting your relationship with your grandchildren - Traci Truly
Call Number: REF DESK KF 547 Z9 T78 2005
ISBN: 9781572485266
Publication Date: 2005
The purpose of this book is to help grandparents secure visitation or obtain custody of their grandchildren either with or without the aid of an attorney. Practical information is provided in plain English. This book tries to help you work with your grandchildren's parents to find the best solution. It will also help you identify when legal action is necessary.

About This Guide

This guide was created to assist grandparents in researching their rights surrounding their grandchildren. This tab lists relevant laws, links to websites that discuss grandparents' rights in "plain English," and information on who to contact. The Practice Aids tab provides a list of library resources that may be useful to practitioners working on grandparents' rights issues.

Texas Law

Below you will find references to areas of the Texas Family Code that govern grandparents' rights issues related to child custody. If you find these statutes difficult to understand, you may want to view the "plain English" resources on this page or speak to an attorney.

Explained in "Plain English"

Because Texas and federal law may not be easy to understand, below you'll find a collection of resources that help to explain the law in "plain English."

  • Grandparents Raising Grandkids
    This website was created by Texas A&M University in association with Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, Area Agency on Aging, Texas Legal Services Center, and the Texas Kincare Taskforce. It provides information for grandparents, information for educators, legal resources, support groups, new information, and links.
  • Grandparents' Page
    This page from the Texas Attorney General provides useful information on Texas visitation laws for grandparents as well as a list of access, custody, and visitation referrals.
  • Grandparents' Rights
    This page from the Texas Legal Services Center discusses grandparents' rights, touching on custody and visitation.
  • Grandparents' Rights
    This page from Legal Aid NorthWest Texas (LANWT) is arranged in Q & A format to provide information about the rights of grandparents to see their grandchildren in Texas.
  • Instructions for Authorization Agreement for Non Parent Relative
    This form, provided by the Department of Family and Protective Services, complies with Family Code ch. 34 and "allows a parent to authorize certain relatives or voluntary caregiver in a Parental Child Safety Placement to take specified actions and obtain services on behalf of a child if the parent is unable to for some reason."
  • Texas Kincare Primer [PDF]
    Kincare is defined in this publication from the Texas Kincare Taskforce as occurring when "a minor child does not live under the control of either parent, but rather is being cared for by a grandmother or grandfather, great-grandmother or great-grandfather, aunt or uncle, older sibling, or another relative."

Who Can I Contact?

The Texas Legal Service Center has two programs that may be useful to grandparents.

  • Legal Hotline for Texans
    The Legal Hotline for Texans provides free legal advice, self-help publications, and referrals to Texans over the age of 60 and Texans who receive Medicare.
  • Texas Kincare Taskforce
    From the home page: "The Texas Kincare Project, housed within the Health Law Program at TLSC, provides access to free legal counseling to address relative caregivers’ questions. The Project supplies caregivers with legal tools and advice to navigate the healthcare, human services and school systems for minor children in their care."
  • Caregiver Support
    From the Texas Department of Aging and Disability Services, caregiver support provides services for people over the age of 60 who care for someone as well as people who care for someone over the age of 60.

Legal Research Guides from the Texas State Law Library

The Texas State Law Library reference librarians have compiled legal research guides for specific areas of the law. These guides contain resources that can help you research a legal issue. The American Association of Law Libraries has a guide for Non-Lawyers on How to Research a Legal Problem. If you have any questions, please contact us at (512) 463-1722 or at


The information provided on this page has been prepared for general information purposes only and should not be construed as, nor substituted for, legal advice. It is strongly recommended that you contact an attorney for advice specific to your fact situation. Your local bar association or the State Bar of Texas Lawyer Referral Information Service (1-800-252-9690) can assist you with locating an attorney.

Some of the electronic resources we refer to in this guide may be in PDF format. Adobe Reader or similar software is required to view PDFs.

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