Dwyer Law Firm, Attorney at Law

Under What Circumstances Might I Petition To Modify A Visitation Order?


In order to modify a visitation schedule in a divorce decree or an order in a Suit Affecting Parent Child Relationship, changed circumstance of a child, conservator, or other party affected by the order has changed. A parent may have a variety of reasons to modify a visitation order. Many times, it is related to a work schedule change or a change of job. Sometimes it is related to a move that results in a distance from the child that makes necessary a visitation schedule change.

Under What Circumstances Could A Neutral Drop Off Or Supervised Visits Take Place?

There is a provision in most divorce decrees and orders affecting parent child relationship that provides for a neutral person appointed by the conservator to pick up and/or drop off the child when circumstance require it. Supervised visitation occurs only after a court proceeding wherein a judge rules that it is in the best interest of and for the safety of the child that visitation be supervised. Commission of family violence against a parent or the child or neglect of a child may be a circumstance wherein visitation is ordered to be supervised.

If My Spouse Isn’t Following The Visitation Or Custody Agreement, What Can I Do?

If a conservator is not following the visitation order, you will have to hire an attorney to file a motion to enforce the visitation schedule. Rockwall and Dallas county courts are less likely to enforce a visitation order the closer in age the child gets to 18. This is because teenagers, even of married couples, want to spend less time with their parents and more with their friends. Also, they have social and extra-curricular activities they want to attend and many times have transportation and a driver’s license.

I Do Not Approve Of My Ex’s Spouse. Can I Get A Court Order Stopping Them From Attending Visits?

You may want to get an order regarding an ex-spouses current girlfriend or boyfriend. Judges are reluctant to place restriction of the ex-spouse unless you can show it is harming the child and thus not in the best interest of the child. However, many decrees of divorce have a “morality clause” which prohibits overnight stays by a boyfriend or girlfriend. This can and will be enforced by a judge. One would need to file a Motion to Enforce.

My Ex Is A Drug Addict And Alcoholic Will She Still Be Able To Get Visitation Rights?

Drug and alcohol issues of a spouse or ex-spouse are circumstances from which a court will, if proven, seek to protect the child. Visitation will usually be supervised if you can show drug or alcohol abuse and possible harm to the child, thus making it not in the best interest of the child to be subjected to the spouse without supervision.

If There Is A Contested Matter Regarding Visitation, Will We Need To Go Back To Court?

All contested matters in any family law case may be settled. Many times the attorneys of the respective parties settle the case without any further court intervention. Also, some Dallas and all Rockwall courts require mediation before a trial on an issue. Therefore, if the attorneys cannot settle the case, the mediation process is very successful at settling cases. If a case settles at mediation, you will not need to go to court for a contested matter. You may be required to go to court for an uncontested prove-up of the mediation agreement.

My Child’s Grandparents Want To File An Order To Request Visitation. Is That Allowed?

Grandparents may obtain visitation with a child under specified circumstances of the Texas family code. The grandparent must be a parent of the child and the parent of the child must’ve been incarcerated, been found by a court to be incompetent, is dead, or does not have actual or court-ordered possession of OR access to the child. The grandparent must attach an affidavit to the original suit on knowledge or belief that contains, along with supporting facts, the allegation, the denial of possession of, or access to the child by the petitioner would significantly impair the child’s physical health or emotional well-being. Further, this proof must be sufficient to overcome the parental presumption that the parent acts in the best interest of the child.

Does My Child Have A Say In The Amount Of Time He Spends With Either Parent?

Children under the age of 12 typically do not get a say in the amount of time they spend with a parent. The Texas Family Code provides that the court shall interview a child of 12 about preferences with whom he/she lives and possession/visitation schedule. If the child is under twelve, the court “may” interview the child regarding the same issues.

For more information on Modifying A Visitation Order In A Divorce, a free initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (972) 746-2805 today.

Rex Dwyer, Esq

Get your questions answered. Call Now for Your Free 30 Minute Consultation (972) 746-2805.

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