Modifying custody orders

Custody modification is something to consider when major changes occur—either in your or child’s life. In addition, modification becomes easier when you and the other parent can agree on the proposed modifications.

You should know that the Texas courts typically accept modification requests when major changes are occurring. Also, in most cases, you must wait a year before requesting a modification. However there are exceptions.

According to Texas Law, you can request a custody order change within a year if:

  • The person with primary custody is asking for or agrees to the change
  • The child’s present environment may endanger the child’s physical health or significantly harm the child’s emotional development
  • The person with primary custody has allowed someone else to have primary care and possession of the child for at least 6 months (not applicable if this is due to active military deployment)

Underlying Issues that Warrant Modification

The following situations would be reasons to file for custody modification:

  • Child endangerment. Physical, emotional or psychological abuse endangers a child’s well-being. The abuse could be in the form of forcefully hitting the child. It might take the form of constant belittling or intimidation. Perhaps your ex-partner is trying to alienate you from the child by making false negative comments to the child. Drug or alcohol abuse can also put a child in harm’s way.
  • Relocation. If you or your ex-spouse is moving a considerable distance or out-of-state, the co-parenting schedule would require modification.
  • Changes in the child. If your child develops a medical condition or is in an accident, their needs change. They might be facing challenges during recovery from harm or difficulties at school that are affecting their academic performance.
  • Changes in a parent’s life. Job loss or a serious health condition constitute a significant change. They might necessitate a change in the visitation schedule or child custody.

Are you considering a custody modification?

If you’re considering custody modification, it would be wise to get a legal opinion. Find out  what steps you need to take and the best approach for dealing with the modification request.

The Law Office of Lindsey J. Wilson provides legal representation for clients in cases involving family law, custody and support, divorce, property division and modifications and enforcement.