Child Custody Modifications
The court can make orders for the custody of a child as is necessary and proper. If there has not been an initial determination of child custody and visitation, then the court may require you to attend mediation in the hopes that a resolution can be made. However, when parties cannot agree to a child care plan that works in the child’s best interest then the court must intervene to make an initial custody determination.
Where an initial custody determination has been made and one party wants to modify the custody order, then there must be a hearing to make that determination. There are many reasons why a parent would like to modify custody. One parent might want to gain more time with the child or perhaps the time actually spent with the child is different in reality then what is on a previous order. Sometimes a parent wants to relocate with the child to a new residence. In any case, there must be a a persuasive showing of changed circumstances affecting the child.
In cases where one the noncustodial parent is requesting to be the custodial parent then there must be a substantial change that warrants the removal of the child from the custodial parent to the noncustodial parent. Situations requiring a complete reversal of custody are usually due to an incident of domestic violence where the child was involved or witnessed the event or when the custodial parent has been arrested and charged with willful endangerment or some crime affecting the well-being of the child. There may be other reasons that warrant a change in custody, but it must ultimately be to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the child.
If you are trying to gain more access and time with your child or something more drastic has occurred and you need to modify custody due to unforeseen circumstances it is important to speak with an experienced child custody modification attorney. Please call us today at 951-683-2297.