Chvatal CK King | Family Law Attorneys
Chvatal CK King | Family Law Attorneys
Speak with one of our attorneys today


Our Focus Is Family Law
Our attorneys have devoted their careers to achieving
excellence in the area of family law.
Our attorneys have devoted their careers to achieving excellence in the area of family law.

Can you change your custody orders in Washington?

On Behalf of | Jul 9, 2024 | Child Custody

Child custody orders outline how you share parental responsibilities and time with your children as co-parents. This includes visitation schedules, decision-making authority and ways to resolve disputes. However, circumstances may change over time, and you could wonder if modifying the existing custody order or parenting plan is possible.

It is possible to modify your custody orders in Washington. However, it involves specific requirements and legal procedures. Here is what you need to know if you are considering a modification.

There must be a substantial change in circumstances

You must demonstrate a significant shift in circumstances affecting the child or parents since the present orders came into effect. It could be changes in the child’s needs, a relocation by either parent or changes in a parent’s ability to care for the child.

The modifications must be in the best interests of the child

The court prioritizes the child’s welfare when issuing custody orders. Therefore, any modifications must abide by that. You must demonstrate how the changes you seek are in the child’s best interests for a successful outcome.

The modification process in a nutshell

In Washington, you must follow a court process to modify child custody orders and make them legally binding to both you and your co-parent. The process involves filing a court petition for the modifications sought. If either parent objects to the changes, there may be hearings where both parties present their arguments and evidence supporting their decisions.

It’s worth noting that courts do not modify custody orders on a whim, given the potential effects on the child’s stability and established routines. As such, reaching out for legal guidance when seeking a modification of custody orders can help you take informed action.