Life is dynamic, whether you agree to it or not. And because life changes, your resolve on specific issues may also change. Sometimes, this change may come after you get a final order on your children’s custody lawsuit. So, when it happens after the court issues the order, you need a modification suit to keep things in check.
Modifying suits is quite common, especially in family law. Although they are common, it wouldn’t sit well with every lawyer if you pull out the modification suit card. Worse is when you opt to modify suits without considering important factors influencing your decision.
So, what are these things that you should have in mind before you modify a suit? How to win a modification suit with the help of your modifications lawyer? In this article, you will learn about the top things you must know before you modify a suit. Also, you should be able to make informed decisions concerning modifying suits.
What Is a Modification Suit?
In simple terms, a modification suit is a lawsuit filed with the family court in place of an older lawsuit. This new lawsuit affirms changes not mentioned in the old custody orders that need to take effect. This change in the custody orders results from a change in the situation, rendering the old custody inefficient or ineffective.
However, modification suits aren’t about only changing the custody orders. A modification suit extends to changing possession schedules too. Sometimes, the suit alters children’s support payments. It affects the duties of each of the parents concerned as well. This lawsuit can change everything that concerns the family and the child’s welfare.
5 Things You Must Know About Suit Modification
Before you think of modifying a suit, you must understand that doing that isn’t as easy as they paint it. Modifying suits comes with its risks. They could even become more complex than you expect, even if you modify only the smaller aspects.
Therefore, the key things you must have in mind before you modify a suit are:
Modification Suits are Risky
Family courts make their final decisions based on the current facts. Yet, modifying suits comes with certain risks. Among many, there are some frequent reasons why parents file for a modification of suits. The first case is where the parent who pays child support has a significant change in income or health status. At any time, when a parent becomes incapable of providing care and safety for the child, estate planning lawyers in Fresno can help you file for a modification in the suit to incorporate changes considering the turn of events.
Another case is where the issues between both parents make the custody agreement hard to deal with. None of the situations is pleasant to the parent, who is at the risk of loss should the court grant new custody orders. Another risk you must consider is the ruling can go differently than you imagine. Work closely with your child support lawyer so that you don’t wish to back out in the middle of a modification suit. In most cases, the other parent may file a plea to modify the orders you want to change. So, ensure you weigh the risks. That way, you can tell if the new order will work in your favor or not.
Modifications Change With the Needs of the Children
Most parents seek modification suits because they feel they should get more time with their kids than the other parent. So, before you seek suit modification, you must ensure you understand this. Parents may also want a change in conservatorship, which covers the rights and duties of each of the parents involved. One familiar example is the medical need of the child. The health needs of children change as they age. So as the children get older, it becomes tougher to agree on medical arrangements.
Be Ready to Collect Evidence
Before the court permits the parent to have their way with the modification suit, the parent must present valid evidence to show that the co-parenting order is not working. If you are the parent pushing for modification, it would help if you write down what should support your claims. Take pictures if you need to. You may also want to create an extensive list.
This list records the days they performed parenting duties at the wrong time. For instance, you, the parent filing for the lawsuit, can keep track of how many possession days the other parent misses. Asking your child’s school to keep a record of incidences where the other parent missed picking up the child can also go a long way.
Understand the Circumstances Spearheading the Change
In a modification suit, it is necessary to understand the current situation. That way, you can determine if it is a substantial change in circumstances. Take your time to qualify the need for a modification suit. For instance, say you agreed with your ex-spouse about the possession order weeks back. Then along the line, your ex-spouse gets a job out of the blues, so they have to move far. You and your ex-spouse can still try to make the custody work.
But, suppose they move too far and deny you your visitation rights. The legal world then tags this as a substantial change in circumstances. Ensure that when this situation arises you have sound legal advice from a professional or a child support lawyer to keep up. That way, you will know what should work and how to do it.
Custody Orders Can Come with Geographic Restrictions
Most custody orders come with a restriction to a particular place. So after the judge gives the custody order, it may become difficult to change it to another location. It would be best if you had a fixed location before filing for the suit. Else, you may have to go the extra mile before you can change it.
Parents’ relationships with their children can change. It can also happen with their ex-spouses. That means the previous court order influencing the relationship may no longer be the best option for the children. Hence, a change of order is necessary.
You will make your modification suit a thousand times easier when you get experienced family law lawyers to help out. That way, you will improve your child’s situation as you improve yours. You will also ensure you are on a path to living better by co-parenting with your children’s parents.
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