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Child Visitation Rights

Visitation allows both parents to have a relationship with their child. When disputes arise, you need an attorney on your side.

The Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt can resolve visitation disputes, always keeping the best interests of your child in mind.

Learn why parents in Southlake, Westover Hills, and Arlington, TX, come to us for help with possession and access matters...

What Are Visitation Rights? Understanding Possession and Access

Visitation rights allow a parent to have physical custody of their child for a specified amount of time. In the state of Texas, visitation takes two forms: possession and access.

Possession and Access After Divorce

Possession means that a parent is able to spend time with their child in person. Access means that you can interact with your child through text, phone, or video, and attend extracurricular activities.

Visitation Schedules

Visitation schedules specify which parent has their child and when. Our Arlington, TX, law firm has helped many families work out a visitation schedule that's fair and mutually agreeable.

Parental Rights During Possession

When a parent has possession and custody of their child, they can make decisions that affect their child's health, upbringing, and religious or moral training.

Conservatorship Child Custody in Texas

In Texas, child custody is called conservatorship. In cases of joint custody, parents are known as Joint Managing Conservators. Even with Joint Managing Conservators, possession orders determine when each parent gets to spend time with their child. Whatever child custody arrangement is in place, our family law attorneys can help maintain fair visitation in the best interests of the child.

child and parent holding hands
Establishing or changing visitation is complex. Let our attorneys help you protect your family's best interests. We can also help you with disputes over custody, child support, and your rights as a grandparent.

The Best Interests
of Your Child


All custody and visitation matters take the best interests of the child into account. This helps ensure that a child has a stable day-to-day upbringing. Possession and access to a child under the age of three is usually determined by the family court. Your child's best interests will be the primary guiding principle should our lawyers take up your case.

Learn About Your Parental Rights Contact a Family Law Attorney Today

We know how important it is to spend time with your child. If issues arise that affect visitation, our family law attorneys can help. The Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt is well-versed in the Texas Family Code, and can help with any disputes related to your divorce, including issues regarding visitation, child custody, and child support.

Our lawyers proudly serve mothers and fathers who live in Southlake, Westover Hills, and Arlington, TX. Our office is located between Dallas and Fort Worth, so we draw many clients from the Metroplex. We are well-known throughout Tarrant County, and have even handled cases for judges and fellow attorneys.

To learn more about visitation rights and how to ensure you maintain a meaningful parent-child relationship, contact our law office online. You can also reach our law firm by phone.

Call for a Consultation

(817) 572-9900

Attorney Donna J. Smiedt
Donna J. Smiedt can help with disputes that arise over custody, visitation, and child support.

Always Ready to Listen Helping Parents in the Dallas-Fort Worth Area


Noel Cookman


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"Do you recommend Donna Smiedt?" OF COURSE I DO. She is one of the smartest lawyers I've ever known and she uses all of that intelligence to help her clients, first and foremost. That's what I call Relevant Competence - talent that matters because it is used to help real people with real challenges. She knows how to get people "across the finish line." And, she is highly regarded in the world of law and the courts. That's critical. You can't go wrong by hiring Donna Smiedt.

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Lindsey Hogue


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I’ve hired Donna and her team for multiple child custody cases. She’s been nothing but kind, caring, honest, and professional during these extremely emotional and stressful times in my life. She always makes me feel like I’m her only client, and puts me at ease with her abilities and knowledge of the law. She’s won every case for me and I don’t know what I would have done without her and excellent team of paralegals and attorneys. She definitely gets the job done and more!! I highly recommend her for any family law issues.

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Distance Between Homes


Different visitation and custody rules apply when parents live within 100 miles of each other, and when parents live more than 100 miles apart. Our Arlington, TX, law firm can go over issues for long-distance parenting to make sure you maintain access to and possession of your child.

Establishing Visitation Rights

Parent and kid on couch

Like child custody arrangements, the right to visitation is usually determined during the course of a divorce proceeding. However, not all parents are married. It is also possible to seek a change in visitation rights after a change in circumstances makes the original visitation arrangement no longer feasible.

If visitation rights are not being honored by the other parent, a request for enforcement of an existing court order may become necessary. In each of these circumstances, it is crucial to partner with an attorney who knows the intricacies of family law and will look out for the best interests of your child.

Creating a Visitation Schedule

A visitation schedule can be agreed upon by the parents, but might also need to be implemented by the court. If parents are not able to agree on a visitation schedule, the court will intervene and develop one that works best for the child.

When considering what type of schedule will best suit your child, the court examines the emotional ties the child has to the parent, the financial ability of the parent to provide for the child, and whether a safe and stable home exists with the non-custodial parent.

For example, a visitation schedule may involve:

  • The first, third, and fifth (when applicable) weekend of each month (the weekend begins at 6:00 pm on Friday and runs until 6:00 pm on Sunday)
  • Thursday evenings from 6:00 to 8:00 pm
  • A month over summer break
  • Every other holiday, such as every other Thanksgiving, Christmas, Fall Break, and Spring Break from school
Person writing



Texas allows grandparents to petition for visitation rights, granting them access and possession. However, child visitation for grandparents is not guaranteed. The Troxel v. Granville decision noted that a parent-child relationship supersedes the visitation rights of grandparents. That said, our law firm can help you seek visitation with your grandchild.

Need Help with a Visitation Issue? Our Family Law Attorneys Are Here for You

If you live in Tarrant County and are facing issues over parenting time and custody, our lawyers can help. Located in the center of the DFW Metroplex, we have helped families in Southlake, Westover Hills, and Arlington, TX, resolve matters over visitation as well as child support and custody. To learn more about modifying visitation rights and other issues surrounding the well-being of your child, contact our family law attorneys online. You can also reach the Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt by phone.

Call Us Today

(817) 572-9900

"Donna and her team are amazing to work with. I felt she knew exactly what I was going through and very compassionate!" Lisa Jennings

Modifying Visitation Changing Possession and Access

Possession and access arrangements as well as conservatorship can be modified. However, these court orders can only be modified if the changes are in the best interests of a child. Your ex-spouse may not be able to recognize how their behavior is putting your child in jeopardy, which is why it's important to work with a lawyer you can trust to present your case in court.

The Family Law Firm of Donna J. Smiedt can point out material and substantial changes in circumstances that justify a change in an existing visitation order. By altering possession and access, you can protect your child and find a more reasonable visitation schedule.

Mom and 2 kids hugging

Mutually Beneficial


While your child's best interests always come first, the team at our Arlington law firm always strives to achieve mutually beneficial resolutions when disputes arise. This can be essential if you want to maintain an amicable co-parenting relationship with your former spouse.

You Can Count on Us  Proudly Serving Families in Dallas-Fort Worth


Tony Hamud


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I have known Donna since 2006 and am beyond grateful to have had her on my side. She is considerate, confident, and truly a loving person. My journey with her has led her to become a genuine friend of mine and I would highly recommend her to anyone! She will listen to your needs and pour her heart into being an advocate for you. She is unlike any other lawyer and will be real with you and take care of business. She excels at what she does and has a passion for winning for all of her clients. She will listen to you and make it her mission to help you throughout your difficult times. Additionally, her staff is very welcoming and helpful. As a person who has gone through two divorces, I would not trust any other lawyer than Donna. Her name, experience, and years in the business tells you all that you need to know.

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Lee Fedornak


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If you have to file for a divorce, PLEASE do NOT go into that unchartered legal arena without Donna's guidance. She is the consummate knowledeable divorce professional! If you are crushingly miserable in your daily life with your spouse, & true happiness is beyond attainable, be brave enough to save yourself. If you step into the Divorce ring, you need the very best to help you from a divorce attorney...That would easily be Donna. Her depth of knowledge in Divorce Law, Process & procedure is second to none. In the courtroom I will tell you she has few peers. She will successfully guide you to a resolution you will be happy with...Have you missed the word "Happy & Peace" in you life...Donna will help you find it again. After going through a challenging divorce with Donna representing me, I ended it by considering her not only the best attorney I could have selected, but a how many people can say that about their attorney? Thank you very much Donna!

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the team at The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt

The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt

The Family Law Firm of Donna J Smiedt is the premier destination for clients who need representation during a divorce, adoption, or other family law matters. Donna J. Smiedt has been in practice since 1986 and is a Board Certified Family Law Attorney – Texas Board of Legal Specialization. Her other professional affiliations include:

  • Texas Bar College
  • Arlington Bar Association
  • Tarrant County Bar Association
  • Texas Academy of Family Law Specialists

To schedule a consultation at our Arlington or Southlake, TX, law firm, contact us online or call (817) 572-9900.

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