What if Your Custody Schedule is Not Working?
Shared custody schedules are based on your situation at the time the order is issued. As we all know, life can get hectic, schedules can change, and responsibilities can increase. If you have realized that your current custody schedule is simply not working for you and your child, you should discuss your options with the best child custody lawyer from Curran Moher Weis with years of experience serving Fairfax, nearby, and surrounding areas.
Is the Change Temporary?
If the change is temporary and you believe your circumstances will return to normal, you and the other parent might agree to make a temporary change. You want to put this in writing and speak with a lawyer about other requirements to protect yourself. If there is no evidence of your agreement, you can face accusations of failing to comply with the child custody order down the road.
If the change in circumstances is permanent, there are ways to modify your custody order. This requires court approval and the issuance of a modified order. This does not necessarily mean you will have to battle it out in court, however.
Seeking the Modification
Be open with the other parent about what is not working for you or your child. They might agree that change is needed for your child’s well-being. If you and the other parent agree to the long-term modification, your lawyer can draft your proposed modified arrangement. They can properly petition the court to incorporate the new schedule into your custody order. If the court finds the modification is warranted and in the best interests of the child, the judge can approve it and issue the modified order.
If you cannot agree and the other parent opposes the modification, you might have to go to court. First, we try to negotiate or mediate the matter to reach an out-of-court agreement when possible. However, if they still refuse to accept the changed schedule, we can petition the court for a modification. You will each present your case, and the judge will determine whether the circumstances warrant modification and whether it is in the best interests of the child.
Opposing a Modification
If your child’s other parent is the one who cannot adhere to the schedule and would like a change, discuss your options with a lawyer right away. A lawyer can help you find a middle ground when possible to agree to reasonable changes that work for everyone.
However, if the other parent is being unreasonable and requesting modifications that you strongly oppose, your lawyer can represent you in court to oppose the modification. You will need to show either that the changes are not substantial or permanent, or that the modification is otherwise not in your child’s best interests, and you want the right legal help.
Learn More From a Fairfax Child Custody Attorney Near You
At Curran Moher Weis, our best Fairfax child custody attorney represents parents in all types of custody matters in Northern, VA, and nearby. If you believe you need to change your custody order, never wait to contact us to learn how our custody lawyers can help.