Can I refuse my ex-spouse visitation if he or she is behind on their child support payments?
No, visitation cannot be contingent on the payment of child support. Even if your ex-spouse is behind on their child support payments, it is a violation of the court order to not allow them the visitation that was granted them. Under the Texas Family Code, there are only two defenses to the failure to comply with court ordered possession and access to a child: (1) the involuntary inability to comply with the order, and (2) the voluntary relinquishment of actual possession and control of the child by the parent who has the right to possession under the order. To alter the current visitation schedule in place, a parent must file a motion to modify with the court. Until the prior order is modified it is still a valid and enforceable order, and to withhold visitation for nonpayment of child support would be a violation punishable by contempt.
Texas Bar Journal
Vol. 73, No. 11