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How Do I Modify an Existing Child Custody Order?

As your family circumstances change, you need to adjust the way you raise your children to best meet their needs. If you are separated, divorced, or otherwise raising your child separately from the other parent, this process can be complicated. You will need to go through the appropriate legal channels in order to make a change.  toddler-david-1546368

An Irvine child custody lawyer can help you to understand the required legal steps you need to take to modify an existing child custody order. Brown & Charbonneau, LLP has helped many clients to successfully make a change to their custody agreements so their child’s needs are better fulfilled. If you want assistance from a caring and compassionate lawyer who can help you fight for more time with your kids, give us a call today.

How Do I Modify an Existing Child Custody Order?

To modify an existing child custody order, you are going to need the petition to court to change the existing parenting plan. You should always petition the court and have your agreement formally changed, even if both you and the other parent believe the modification is appropriate. The other parent could agree to change the custody plan but change his or her mind later without any notice if you do not have a new court order in place reflecting the reality of your new custody plan.

The specific process for changing an existing child custody order is going to vary depending upon whether both parents agree to the new custody arrangement or depending upon whether only one parent wants to make a change and the other does not.

If both parents believe that they want to change the custody agreement and they have come to a new agreement on how custody should be shared, the parents can petition the court together. With agreement from both mom and dad, the court should be amenable to the change and will make the necessary modifications. The new agreement the parents have reached will become the official, legally enforceable custody order.

If only one parent wants a change and the other does not, then the parent who wants the modification will need to petition the court to alter the existing custody arrangement. The parent who is asking the court for a modification is going to have a chance to make arguments to the court about why the change is appropriate. The other parent who is objecting to the modification of the custody agreement is also going to get to make a case.

When deciding whether to modify an existing child custody order, the court is going to look at the best interests of the child standard, just as the judge did when the initial custody decision was made. If a modification is viewed as the best thing, the court may alter the existing order.

Brown  & Charbonneau, LLP can provide you with legal assistance in petitioning the court to change custody agreements and in making a compelling case about why a custody order should be altered. To learn more about the assistance we can offer and to get help starting the process, give our Irvine child custody lawyers a call today.