Reasons to Modify Child Custody

From the time of their child’s birth until adulthood, parents in Texas have to make a multitude of decisions for their child. This typically means deciding what the child’s needs are, what school they will attend, how to discipline them, what extracurricular activities they will be involved and other details on the way the child will be raised. When a child’s parents are divorced, their child custody order will dictate whether one or both parents have the right to make these types of decisions. However, if a parent seeks to alter how physical and legal custody currently looks, it might be possible to seek a child custody modification.

In some cases, child custody modification is sought for the best interests of the child. This means that the court will look at the parent’s request to determine if it is necessary. It is important that a child custody modification does not unduly interrupt the child’s life and his or her wellbeing. Thus, if a parent reasonably believes that his or her child is in danger by remaining in the custody of one parent, a request for modification could be made. This typically occurs when there are domestic violence issues, the child is in immediate danger or the child expressed his or her unwillingness to remain in the household of the parent where danger might be present.

When a parent relocates, this could trigger a custody modification request. Prior to awarding this request, the court will look at certain factors. This includes the motivation of the moving parent, whether the move will make a visitation schedule impractical or impossible if parents have communicated ways to rework their parenting schedule, and whether the child’s life will be interrupted.

A final common reason to seek child custody modification is when one parent continually ignores the agreed-upon visitation schedule. When one parent is not cooperating, the court might look at this matter, considering alterations as necessary. But first, they will look at the terms of the order and consider why the visitation is schedule is not being followed.

Child custody is a challenging family law matter. It can take much effort to arrive at an original order, but even so, parents may need to revisit this order post-divorce if it becomes a problem. When modifying a child custody order, it is important to ensure the best interests of the child are met.

Source:, “5 Reasons to Request Child Custody Modification,” Debrina Washington, Oct. 23, 2017

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