Following a divorce, a couple will make child custody and visitation arrangements in order to ensure the well-being and proper growth of children from he marriage. Many separated couples make these arrangements work, yet adjustments may be necessary, whether they are mutually agreed upon or brought about by one of the spouses.
At Froerer & Miles, we know just how complicated these kinds of matters can be. Our team of Ogden, UT child custody lawyers would like to consider why modifications to child custody may be needed and what this process involves.
When Do Child Custody Modifications Occur?
In the broadest of terms, child custody modifications occur when situation has changed such that the best interests of a child must be reconsidered. This could mean changes in the lives of a spouse, or changes to the life of the child. Whatever the case may be, modifications to existing custody arrangements will need to be considered to address the child’s continued well-being.
Below are a few different reasons for child custody modifications.
Death of a Parent
If one of the child’s parents dies, it’s important that existing child custody arrangements be reconsidered. Sometimes the surviving spouse assumed full custody of the child. However, sometimes a court may rule that it’s best for the child to be in the custody of a third-party, such as grandparents or another relative of the deceased parent.
Child endangerment is one of the most common reasons for modifying child custody agreements. This means that a spouse has reason to believe the other spouse’s home is not an ideal living situation for the child or children. There could be signs of domestic abuse of child abuse in that environment, or drug/alcohol abuse. If the child is in danger, the court can step in and make sure the child is in a safer environment with the other parent.
Parents may have to move for career opportunities or for personal reasons. When this happens, child custody may need to be reconsidered given the child’s education and other needs that are rooted to a specific city or geographic region.
Former Spouse Violates Visitation Orders
Child visitation allows non-custodial parents to interact with their chid or children. Sometimes these visitation agreements are violated, however, and the lack of cooperation by one parent can lead to great strain and tension between spouses that can impact a child’s life. In some cases, this may be grounds for challenging child custody and making modifications when necessary.
How Do Child Custody Modifications Occur?
There are two ways that these modifications occur, generally speaking.
- If both parents mutually agree on a modification, the changes can be made easily through proper channels.
- If one parent has issues with the other parent, these can be brought before the court, who will then make a decision that’s in the best interests of the child.
Consulting with an experienced child custody attorney can be helpful in either of these scenarios, though professional legal advice is essential when there are disputes between spouses. Expert counsel can help you and your child’s well-being.
Learn More About Child Custody Issues
For more information about your legal rights and options when it comes to family law issues, be sure to contact our team of family law attorneys today. The lawyers of Froerer & Miles are here to help you in your time of legal need.