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The Texas Expanded Possession Schedule
Typical Texas Expanded Standard Possession as it is contained in a decree.

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The following is an example of standard decree or order language for the Expanded Standard Possession Order as it is found in Texas. The standard "visitation" order is set out here for review and comparison purposes.  The next article discusses enforcement of the visitation order.

 

In short, the expanded standard possession schedule for the non-primary conservator is:

  1. First, Third and Fifth Friday of Each Month.

  2. Every Thursday night through the school year commencing at the time school is dismissed and ending the next morning (Friday morning) at the time school resumes.

  3. If within georgraphic limitation of the divorce decree or 100 miles (depending upon the decree), 30 days in the Summer.

  4. Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Spring Break are split year end and year out evenly.

  5. Mother will always receive Mother's day weekend commencing on Friday for the weekend.

  6. Father will always receive Father's day weekend commencing on Friday for that weekend.

What follows is an example of the written order as it may be found in a divorce decree.

 

Expanded Standard Possession Order

 

IT IS ORDERED that Husband and Wife shall comply with all terms and conditions of this Standard Possession Order.  IT IS ORDERED that this Standard Possession Order is effective immediately and applies to all periods of possession occurring after the date this "Agreed Decree of Divorce" is signed by the presiding judge.

Definitions

 

1.            In this Standard Possession Order "school" means the primary or secondary school in which a child is enrolled or, if the child is not enrolled in a primary or secondary school, the public school district in which the child primarily resides.

 

2.            In this Standard Possession Order "child" includes each child who is a subject of this suit while that child is under the age of eighteen years and not otherwise emancipated.

 

Mutual Agreement or Specified Terms for Possession

 

IT IS ORDERED that Husband shall have possession of the child at all times mutually agreed to in advance by the parties or, in the absence of mutual agreement, under the specified terms set out in this Standard  Possession Order.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Wife shall have possession of the child at all times not specifically awarded herein to Husband.

Parents Who Reside 100 Miles or Less Apart

 

1.            If Husband resides 100 miles or less from the primary residence of the child, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child as follows:

 

a.            .Weekends: On weekends beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the first, third, and fifth Friday of each month and ending on the following Monday at the time the  child’s school resumes

 

b.            Thursdays:  On Thursdays of each week beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school and ending at the time school resumes on Friday. 

 

2.            The following provisions govern possession of the child for vacations and certain specific holidays and supersede conflicting weekend or Thursday periods of possession.  IT IS ORDERED that Husband and Wife shall have possession of the child as follows:

 

a.            Spring Break: Husband shall have possession in even‑numbered years, beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the day the child is dismissed from school for the school's spring vacation and ending at 6 p.m. on the day before school resumes after that vacation, and Wife shall have possession for the same period in odd-numbered years;

 

b.            Extended Summer Possession:

 

1.            Husband’s Extended Summer Possession with Notice: If Husband gives Wife written notice by April 1 of each year specifying an extended period or periods of summer possession, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child for 30 days beginning not earlier than the day after the child's school is dismissed for the summer vacation and ending not later than seven days before school resumes at the end of the summer vacation, to be exercised in not more than two separate periods of at least seven consecutive days each; or

 

2.            Husband’s Extended Summer Possession without Notice: If Husband does not give Wife written notice by April 1 of each year specifying an extended period or periods of summer possession, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child for 30 consecutive days beginning at 6 p.m. on July 1 and ending at 6 p.m. on July 31.

 

c.            Wife’s Possession During Extended Summer Possession

 

1.            Wife’s Designated Weekend During Husband’s Extended Summer Possession: If Wife gives Husband written notice by April 15 of each year, it is ORDERED that Wife have possession of the child on any one weekend beginning Friday at 6 p.m. and ending at 6 p.m. on the following Sunday during one period of Husband’s extended summer possession, provided that Wife picks up the child from Husband and returns the child to that same place; and

 

2.            Wife’s Extended Summer Possession: If Wife gives Husband written notice by April 15 of each year or gives Husband 14 days written notice on or after April 16 of each year, it is ORDERED that Wife may designate one weekend beginning not earlier than the day after the child's school is dismissed for the summer vacation and ending not later than seven days before school resumes at the end of the summer vacation, during which Husband's otherwise scheduled weekend period of possession will not take place, provided that the weekend designated does not interfere with Husband's period or periods of extended summer possession.

 

 

Parents Who Reside over 100 Miles Apart

 

1.            If Husband resides more than 100 miles from the residence of the child, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child as follows:

a.            Weekends: 

 

1.            Either regular weekend possession beginning on the first, third, and fifth Friday as provided under the terms applicable to parents who reside 100 miles or less apart or not more than one weekend per month of Husband's choice beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the day school recesses for the weekend and ending at 6 p.m. on the day before school resumes after the weekend, provided that Husband gives Wife 14 days' written notice preceding a designated weekend, and provided that Husband elects an option for this alternative period of possession by written notice given to Wife within 90 days after the date this order is signed by the presiding judge;

  

b.            Spring Break:  Each year beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the day the child is dismissed from school for the school's spring vacation and ending at 6 p.m. on the day before school resumes after that vacation;

 

c.            Extended Summer Possession:

 

1.            Husband’s Extended Summer Possession with Notice: If Husband gives Wife written notice by April 1 of each year specifying an extended period or periods of summer possession, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child for 42 days beginning not earlier than the day after the child's school is dismissed for the summer vacation and ending not later than seven days before school resumes at the end of the summer vacation, to be exercised in not more than two separate periods of at least seven consecutive days each; or

 

2.            Husband’s Extended Summer Possession without Notice: If Husband does not give Wife written notice by April 1 of each year specifying an extended period or periods of summer possession, it is ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child for 42 consecutive days beginning at 6 p.m. on June 15 and ending at 6 p.m. on July 27.

 

d.            Wife’s Possession During Extended Summer Possession:

 

1.    Wife’s Designated Weekend During Husband’s Extended Summer Possession: If Wife gives Husband written notice by April 15 of each year it is ORDERED that Wife have possession of the child on one weekend beginning Friday at 6 p.m. and ending at 6 p.m. on the following Sunday during one period of Husband’s extended summer possession, provided that Wife picks up the child from Husband and returns the child to that same place; and

 

2.    Wife’s Extended Summer Possession: If Wife gives Husband written notice by April 15 of each year, it is ORDERED that Wife may designate 21 days beginning not earlier than the day after the child's school is dismissed for the summer vacation and ending not later than seven days before school resumes at the end of the summer vacation, to be exercised in not more than two separate periods of at least seven consecutive days each, during which Husband may not have possession of the child, provided that the period or periods so designated do not interfere with Husband's period or periods of extended summer possession.

 

Holiday Possession Unaffected by Distance Parents Reside Apart

 

The following provisions govern possession of the child for certain specific holidays and supersede conflicting weekend or Wednesday periods of possession without regard to the distance the parents reside apart.  IT IS ORDERED that Husband and Wife have rights of possession of the child as follows:

1.            Christmas:

 

IT IS ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child in even‑numbered years beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the day the child is dismissed from school for the Christmas school vacation and ending at noon on December 28.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Wife have possession for the same period in odd‑numbered years;

 

IT IS ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child in odd‑numbered years beginning at noon on December 28 and ending at 6 p.m. on the day before school resumes after that vacation.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Wife have possession for the same period in even‑numbered years;

 

1.            Thanksgiving:    IT IS ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child in odd‑numbered years, beginning at the time the child is dismissed from school on the day the child is dismissed from school before Thanksgiving and ending at 6 p.m. on the following Sunday.  IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that Wife have possession for the same period in even‑numbered years;

 

2.            Birthday: The parent not otherwise entitled under this possession order to present possession of a child and the child’s siblings on the child's birthday shall have possession of the child beginning at 6 p.m. and ending at 8 p.m. on that day, provided that the parent picks up the child from the residence of the parent entitled to possession and returns the child to that same place;

 

3.            Father’s Day:  IT IS ORDERED that Husband have possession of the child beginning at 6 p.m. on the Friday preceding Father's Day and ending on Father's Day at 6 p.m., provided that, if Husband is not otherwise entitled under this possession order to present possession of the child, Husband picks up the child from Wife’s residence and returns the child to that same place; and

 

4.            Mother’s Day:  IT IS ORDERED that Wife have possession of the child beginning at 6 p.m. on the Friday preceding Mother's Day and ending on Mother's Day at 6 p.m., provided that, if Wife is not otherwise entitled under this possession order to present possession of the child, Wife picks up the child from Husband’s residence and returns the child to that same place.

 

Weekend Possession Extended by Holiday

 

If a weekend period of possession of Husband coincides with a school holiday during the regular school term or with a federal, state, or local holiday during the summer months in which school is not in session, it is ORDERED that Husband’s weekend period of possession shall end at 6 p.m. on a Monday holiday or school holiday or shall begin at the time the child is dismissed from school Thursday for a Friday holiday or school holiday.

General Terms and Conditions.  Except as otherwise explicitly provided in this possession order, the terms and conditions of possession of the Child that apply are as follows:

1.            Surrender of Child by Wife.  Wife is ORDERED to surrender the child to Husband at the beginning of each period of Husband’s possession, by delivering the child to Husband at Wife’s residence.

 

2.            Surrender of Child by Husband.  Husband is ORDERED to surrender the child to Wife at the beginning of each period of Wife’s possession, by delivering the child to Wife at Husband's residence.

 

3.            Personal Effects.  Each conservator is ORDERED to return with the child the personal effects that the child brought at the beginning of the period of possession.

 

4.            Designation of Competent Adult.  Each conservator may designate any competent adult to pick up and return the child, as applicable.  IT IS ORDERED that a conservator or a designated competent adult be present when the child is picked up or returned.

 

5.            Written Notice.  Written notice shall be deemed to have been timely made if received or postmarked before or at the time that notice is due.

 

6.            Child Not Returned to School.  If a party's time of possession of a child ends at the time school resumes and for any reason the child is not or will not be returned to school, the party in possession of the child is ORDERED to immediately notify the school and the other party that the child will not be or has not been returned to school.

 

7.            Notice to Other Parent.        Each party is ORDERED to promptly inform the other party in a timely manner of significant information concerning the health, education, and welfare of the child. 

This concludes the this Possession Order.

 

The possession and access ordered above applies to each child the subject of this suit while the child is under the age of 18 years and not otherwise emancipated. 



More...Next Article - Father Enforcement of the Possession Order by Contempt

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