Many couples in Washington end up getting divorced. Child custody is a big issue with many families. While many custody orders stay intact for a long time after being issued, there are times when modification might be needed. There are several reasons why you might need a modification to your current parenting plan.
One of the parents has died
One of the most common reasons to need a modification to a child custody order is that a custodial parent has died. Often, in this situation, the court will have to determine whether the non-custodial parent is fit to gain full custody and responsibility of the child. Sometimes, the judge will decide on a third party to gain custody, but it’s assumed that the child would benefit more from staying with the parent who is still living.
One of the parents is moving
Child custody modification might be needed if one of the parents is moving far away. The court will look at certain details when making a decision, including the following:
- Why the parent is moving
- How the child’s life would be impacted by the modification order
- Whether the move will make the current visitation schedule difficult or even impossible
- Whether the parents have been communicating about how to revise the visitation schedule
The current visitation schedule is being ignored
Sometimes, child custody modification can be made when one parent is ignoring the current visitation schedule. If this is the case, the court is more open to modifying the current custody order and will take certain factors into consideration when making changes. They include the following:
- Whether the parents have come to an agreement
- Whether the parents are communicating with one another
- The reasons why the visitation schedule has been ignored
The child is in danger
If the child is in danger, the court will be quick to consider modifying the custody order. When there is the issue of domestic violence, the danger the child faces is imminent and the child expresses fear of staying in the parent’s home, the custody order may be modified.
Child custody modification typically occurs with the best interests of the child in mind. In these situations, the court may modify the current order.