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Click here for the full text of this decision FACTS:James Radford Sayman and Jennifer Lou Barger divorced in May 2004 and were named joint managing conservators of their three children. Barger is the daughter of Kathy Hartzog and Jerry Grills. In May 2005, Barger began abusing drugs, and Sayman filed a petition to modify the parent-child relationship. Hartzog and Grills intervened, seeking possession of or access to the children pursuant to the grandparent-access statute. The trial court entered temporary orders limiting Barger’s right to possession of the children to supervised possession at Hannah’s House. However, Barger failed to exercise her right to supervised possession of the children. After a hearing, the trial court granted both Sayman’s and the grandparents’ petitions. The trial court designated Sayman as the sole managing conservator of the children, granted Hartzog and Grills specific periods of possession of the children, and designated Barger as possessory conservator of the children with a right to supervised possession of the children at Hannah’s House every Wednesday from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. and every Saturday from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. Sayman appealed. HOLDING:Reversed and rendered. Texas Family Code �153.433 sets out the requirements that must be met before a trial court may order access to a grandchild by a grandparent. Section 153.433 states that a trial court shall order reasonable possession of or access to a grandchild by a grandparent if: “(1) at the time the relief is requested, at least one biological or adoptive parent of the child has not had that parent’s parental rights terminated; “(2) the grandparent requesting possession of or access to the child overcomes the presumption that a parent acts in the best interest of the parent’s child by proving by a preponderance of the evidence that denial of possession of or access to the child would significantly impair the child’s physical health or emotional well-being; and “(3) the grandparent requesting possession of or access to the child is a parent of a parent of the child and that parent of the child: “(A) has been incarcerated in jail or prison during the three-month period preceding the filing of the petition; “(B) has been found by a court to be incompetent; “(C) is dead; or “(D) does not have actual or court-ordered possession of or access to the child.” A trial court abuses its discretion when it grants access to a grandparent who fails to meet the statutory requirements. Sayman argued that Hartzog and Grills did not meet the requirements of �153.433(3), because there was no evidence Barger was incarcerated, incompetent or dead, and Barger has court-ordered possession of the children. Hartzog and Grills contended that �153.433(3)(D) was ambiguous and that “[i]f any one of the three [options] exist, the grandparents have met this requirement.” They asserted that because Barger was not exercising her possession, she lacked actual possession of the children. As a result, Hartzog and Grills argued that they met the statutory requirements. Section 153.433(3)(D), the court stated, is written in the disjunctive with three alternatives. A grandparent has the right to access to or possession of the children if the other statutory requirements are met and if the parent of the child does not have: 1. actual possession of the children; 2. court-ordered possession of the children; or 3. access to the children. These three alternatives must be treated separately. If one of the listed alternatives is present, the grandparents do not meet the statutory requirements. In this case, the court noted, Barger has court-ordered possession of the children. Accordingly, Hartzog and Grills do not meet the statutory requirements for access to or possession of the children. Thus, the court held that the trial court abused its discretion in granting Hartzog’s and Grills’ petition when they did not meet the statutory requirements. Accordingly, the court reversed the trial court’s order granting Hartzog’s and Grills’ possession of the children and rendered judgment denying their petition for access. OPINION:Thomas, C.J.; Thomas, C.J., and Bridges and FitzGerald, JJ.

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