During a divorce, parents frequently have to figure out child custody. Child custody determines the rights and responsibilities of each parent and has a significant amount of influence on the parenting plans that develop.
Most courts believe that the parents should work together in a joint custody arrangement. Joint custody means that the parental time should be mostly evenly divided. When this happens, parents have to figure out visitation schedules. These schedules often work around school and jobs.
Sometimes parents may decide that a child custody arrangement isn’t working. Child custody can be changed, but there often has to be a valid reason. Here are a few reasons the court may agree to a custody modification:
1. A parent has moved (or wants to move)
Many parents still live close enough so that their children can see them easily. If a parent moves too far away, it may disrupt a child’s well-being. If it’s agreed that a parent’s move would make it harder for a child or to follow a custody arrangement, then there may be modifications so that the parenting time can be appropriately adjusted or e-visitation can be added in.
2. A parent’s work or school schedule has changed
Most visitation schedules consider the hours parents work or go to school. If a parent’s schedule changes, then it may be harder to follow an arrangement. Visitation may be changed to accommodate a parent’s schedule.
3. A child has developed special needs
Sometimes a child’s needs have changed, requiring parents to take on more parenting responsibilities. A parent may need to take on more custody if, for example, a child has developmental problems and needs more care in a day.
Parents may need to understand their legal rights and discuss how a child custody modification could benefit them.