Guidance with Modifying a Child Custody Order
Whether you are seeking a modification in child custody, or you are protesting a request for modification, the attorneys at Scott Mitchell Law Incorporated, serving Modesto and Central California are here to help you. We are highly skilled in all family law matters, and will support and guide you smoothly through this complex and often emotional issue.
When Modifications Must Be Made
When parents divorce, a decision will have to be made as to child custody of any children involved. Who they will live with and how often the non-custodial parent will be allowed to visit needs to be determined. Sometimes these issues are worked out between the two divorcing spouses. But where the two parents cannot get along well or make rational decisions about their children's future, then the court may have to step in and make the decision for them.
Often, one parent will be awarded sole physical custody and the other given visitation rights, or both might be awarded joint custody, meaning the child spends an equal amount of time with each parent. There is also the issue of legal custody. This refers to who makes decisions regarding education, religion, medical needs, etc. While one parent may have sole physical custody, often he or she will share legal custody with the ex spouse. Matters of divorce, child support and custody can more often than not become complex issues. As Modesto family lawyers at Scott Mitchell Law Incorporated in Modesto, we represent all aspects of family law. It is our paramount goal to help bring these issues to an amicable conclusion.
Reasons for Modifying Child Custody
Child custody arrangements might need to be modified from time to time. Circumstances can change, which make the current arrangements unworkable, or less workable. This change of circumstances will need to be significant for the modification to be approved by the court. Examples could be a change in schedule, or possibly one or both parents need to change their location. There can be many reasons. If a parent has had a significant change of circumstance, it is possible to modify a court order that was previously handed down by the court.
If the parents can agree with each other on the changes, it is a relatively simple matter. But if they cannot agree, the court must be involved. There will be a hearing, followed by an assessment, evaluation, or even an investigation so that the best decisions will be made. A family lawyer in Turlock can perform all the necessary forms and file a motion for modification of child custody.
The basic procedure involved in modifying a child custody order in California is to first fill out and file the forms to petition the court for a hearing requesting a change to the current custody arrangement. A hearing is scheduled. The parent not requesting the modification will need to be served with notice of intent to request a modification of custody by the court. Both parties will attend the scheduled hearing.
At the hearing, all supporting documentation will be entered into evidence. There can also be witnesses required to appear. If any that are needed are unwilling to appear, they will be subpoenaed. The judge will listen to and look at all the evidence presented and make a decision. As stated earlier, depending on the evidence, there may be a need for an investigation in the facts and additional hearings scheduled. The judge will be guided most predominantly by what is in the best interest of the child, once he as all the facts. Our Modesto child custody attorneys at Scott Mitchell Law Incorporated can handle all the necessary forms and procedures.