summer visitation in Texas

It is the month of May and summer in Texas is upon us.  Just a little refresher on summer visitation and the standard visitation orders in Texas.

For the parent with visitation:

April 1st  is the deadline to designate your thirty days of visitation in the summer if your standard possession order is out of Texas.  If you designated days, then you know when your visit begins and ends.  If you did not designate your visitation times by April 1st then it defaults to July 1 through July 31st .  The possession beginning and ending times are 6:00 p.m. by default in Texas.  Always check your order for exact dates and times.

Custodial parent (parent with custody):

For the custodial parent, you have certain times set out for you for summer visitation in Texas as well.  If you give the visiting parent notice by April 15th you can designate one weekend in their thirty day period of possession to have the child.  It will begin at 6:00 p.m. on Friday and end at 6:00 p.m. on Sunday and you must do all the driving (i.e. pick up and drop off).  If you did not designate this weekend by April 15th then you lose that weekend.

For example, if the visiting parent did not designate their thirty day summer possession by April 1st then we know they get the month of July.  If the custodial parent gives notice between April 2 and April 15 of a weekend in July that they would like possession of the child, they get that weekend.  If they do not give notice during that time frame they do not get any weekends during the thirty days summer visitation of the visiting parent.

The custodial parent gets and additional summer weekend pursuant to the standard visitation orders in Texas.  This weekend takes place outside of the visiting parent’s thirty day summer possession.  If the custodial parent gives the visiting parent notice by April 15th or 14 days written notice on or after April 16th, that parent can choose one weekend during the summer to exercise visitation that would have otherwise been the visiting parent’s weekend.   Again, this visit begins at 6:00 p.m. on Friday and ends at 6:00 p.m. on the following Sunday and the custodial parent must do all the driving.

Using our example above we know that the visiting parent has extended summer possession for the month of July in Texas without any other notice.  That leaves June and August for the custodial parent to choose a weekend.  Lets say custodial parent misses the April 15th date but gives written notice to the other parent on July 16th that they will exercise their summer visitation weekend on August 6th, a weekend that would have otherwise been the visiting parent’s weekend.  Under that scenario, that parent would have the child beginning July 31st at 6:00 p.m. through August 20th at 6:00 p.m. (the next weekend possession by the visiting parent).  That allows plenty of time for a summer vacation to some beautiful locale in the great State of Texas.

Again, check your order for exact times for pick up and drop off as they may vary in your order.

That about wraps it up for summer visitation in Texas under a standard possession order.  As always, feel free to comment.

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410 Responses to summer visitation in Texas

  1. Nessa June 15, 2017 at 10:15 am #

    In my case, I have a standard court order and I allow my sons dad to see him whenever he wants. He never calls or asks about our son and until two months ago when I reached out to him he wasn’t picking him up for weekly thursday visits. We arranged for me to drop our son off Mondays instead of Thursdays because it works better with his schedule and I want him to be able to see his son. Now he never wrote a letter saying what days he wanted him but he requested the month of June which I have no problem with. I was wondering because I am a little confused with the wording on the order but during the summer months not including June because he currently has him and I get my one weekend, do I have to continue dropping my son off once a week for him or is that only during the school year? I do not mind the way things are right now I am just curious because there are parts that don’t make sense to me. Thank you.

  2. Nessa June 15, 2017 at 10:22 am #

    I just realized that it is during the school year only, sorry, you don’t have to respond haha

  3. Raul June 27, 2017 at 10:32 pm #

    I am the noncustodial parent…my daughters are 14 and 11…they decided they don’t want to come with me for the summer .. do I still have the right to pick them up even if they don’t want to come? I believe their mom is brainwashing them, but I have no evidence of that. I am in the state of Texas and I live in El Paso and my daughters are in Fort Worth. Please help.

  4. Pattye June 29, 2017 at 5:46 pm #

    Extended summer 2017 without notice
    Do I get kids June 30th for the 5th weekend of June and start my summer Sat July 1st ?

  5. Chris Schmiedeke July 14, 2017 at 8:33 am #


  6. Krystal Krob July 15, 2017 at 5:44 pm #

    Can custodial parent take child out of state on their period of possession without notification visiting another state?

  7. Mike July 28, 2017 at 8:33 pm #

    Hi Chris. Great site you have here. Can a summer weekend be used as a front or back bookend to the 30 days of summer possession? In other words, normal weekend starts Friday at 6:00p and ends on Sunday at 6:00p and then I start summer possession for 30 days on that Sunday at 6:00p. Or even start it on Saturday at 6:00p if I run into the 7-day start of school constraint. Thanks in advance.

  8. Deanna December 8, 2017 at 11:32 am #


    I recently signed a decree, I do not feel I had proper counsel. Anyway, I questioned the summer visitation. The father has a set time during the summer July 1-15 and Aug 1-15. Then the decree said he would get his 1st, 3rd and 5th weekends. Does the non custodial parent still get weekends during the summer plus his 30 days?

    Thank you in Advance

  9. Chris Schmiedeke December 8, 2017 at 11:56 am #

    It is impossible for me to tell what your order lays out without seeing it. In a standard possession order, the custodial parent gets all times not given to the non-custodial parent during the summer. In addition, they can “steal” a weekend inside the non-custoials extended thirty days and one weekend outside the thirty days, with proper notice.

  10. Chris Schmiedeke December 8, 2017 at 11:57 am #

    I suppose you can do that if you designate your thirty days.

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