Making modifications to a parenting plan

As the new school year begins, family schedules begin to fill up and change. For children in divorced households, this can be a delicate balance to keep.

In some cases, previous arrangements may not work as effectively as they once did, and a modification may be necessary. Before seeking modifications, parents should consider a few things.

Work it out

When possible, it is always a good idea to work out any child custody or support changes between the two parents. Special circumstances and situations do arise, and it is important that both parties be perceptive to this fact and work together when possible. If it is a drastic change to current arrangements, the two parties should formally agree to the modifications and submit them through the court. However, working it out together will save time, effort and money.

Show need

If parents cannot come to an agreement, then it may be necessary to seek a court-ordered modification. For the court to approve a modification, a parent must show a true need for it. There must be a significant change in the circumstances upon which the courts made the initial parenting plan judgment. If a parent can show that a specific modification would work in the best interest of the child rather than the current situation, the court may approve a modification as well. 

Proper paperwork

Parents may have to complete a few different forms, depending upon the situation. If both parents agree to the modification, they may complete a change form and file it together. On the other hand, if one parent petitions for a modification, he or she files a complaint for modification form or a motion for temporary orders if a temporary order were currently in place.

Change in life is necessary. When it involves a child, it is critical that parties are conscious and proactive about those changes. For parents seeking a modification to child support, it is critical that they make sure the change is for the best interest of the child.

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