Life is unpredictable and a custody agreement that may have originally worked could become obsolete over time. Parent and child schedules shift on a regular basis; families relocate; and basic needs change.
In Texas, either parent can file a petition for child custody modification at any time. If both parents agree on the new custody terms, the process can go rather quickly. Here are the most popular reasons why parents modify custody orders.
Reason #1: Change in Residence
If either parent needs to change their residence for employment or personal reasons, the original custody schedule could pose a problem. Perhaps before the move both parents lived within a few miles of each other, while now they live a great deal farther. It might be difficult to fulfill the custody schedule. If one parent moves to the other side of the state or another state entirely, it may be necessary to modify the visitation or time-sharing agreements of the custody arrangement.
Reason #2: Medical Conditions
An illness can arise at any time; depending on the severity of it, the custody agreement may need to be modified. For example, if the custodial parent is diagnosed with a chronic illness that limits the way they can care for their child, the non-custodial parent may need to step in to either take on the role or work out a schedule where they have the child for the majority of the time.
Reason #3: Parental Incarceration
If the custodial parent goes to prison, the child custody agreement will have to be amended. In this case, the non-custodial parent may have to take the child into their home either permanently or temporarily, depending on the length of the sentence.
Reason #4: Child’s Preference
If the child is 12 years or older, they can choose which parent they would rather live with. In some cases, younger children may also be interviewed by a court to see who they prefer to live with as well. However, just because the child wants to live with a certain parent doesn’t mean they will automatically get their wish. The court will take their preference into consideration, but the decision will ultimately come down to what’s in the child’s best interest.
Reason #5: Relinquishment of Custody
The court could modify a custody order if the custodial parent voluntarily gives up primary custody rights for at least 6 months. For example, if the child has been living with their grandparents or another family member for 6 months, the parents can either relinquish custody to that family member or the non-custodial parent. This doesn’t apply if the period is only temporary, such as if the custodial parent is on military business.
Contact The Springer Law Firm
If you are thinking of modifying your original custody agreement, reach out to our firm today. We are a compassionate group of attorneys with extensive experience in child custody arrangements. We can help the modification process move through the court system quickly and without incident.
Contact us online or call our firm at (281) 990-6025 for a consultation today.