While the original custody arrangement worked well for several years, things have changed. Working out something with the custodial parent and not bother to have the agreement officially amended by the court may sound tempting. Even if the relationship between the former spouses is amicable, it still makes sense to make those new arrangements official. Here are some of the ways that a child custody lawyer in Jacksonville can make that happen.
Changing Visitation Rights
Perhaps changes in work or living situations can make it possible for the children to spend more time with the non-custodial parent. To ensure there is no confusion about what type of changes are desired, it pays to talk with a child custody lawyer in Jacksonville. The lawyer can prepare a document that outlines the changes and ensure they are presented to the court. Unless there is some reason to think that making changes would not be in the best interests of the children, the judge is likely to grant the request for an amendment.
Changing the Status of the Non-Custodial Parent
At the time of the divorce, the non-custodial parent agreed that the custodial parent would retain full custody. Certain events have led to the feeling that shared custody would be better for everyone involved. The lawyer can present the request to the court, along with information that provides the reasoning behind the request. If the judge agrees that joint custody would be beneficial for the children, the original custody plan will be amended.
The Kids Want to Live with the Non-Custodial Parent
Once the children reach a certain age, they have the option of choosing which parent they want to live with full time. A lawyer can talk with the kids and determine if this is really what they want. If so, a petition is filed with the court. Typically, the judge will want to meet with the children and ask a few questions before making a decision. If the judge is convinced that the request is reasonable and that the kids would benefit from the change, it will be ordered.
Don’t assume that amending a current custody agreement will be difficult. Schedule a free consultation today and find out what sort of action is required. In the best case scenario, the matter can be settled quickly.