How Can a Parent Be Granted a Child Custody Modification in California?

What are the grounds a judge will accept for modifying your child custody order? After a final judgment has been rendered, the California courts may modify certain court orders. There are several different situations or reasons a change could be made to your existing child custody order.

A Change in Circumstances

When there is a child custody order in place, the court will not change it unless there has been a major change in circumstances. These include:

  • A parent demonstrates a material change in circumstances that affects the child’s best interests.
  • Sometimes, the parents may be able to come to a modification agreement on their own and submit a proposed modification to the court for approval.
  • The judge will review the proposed modification and decide whether or not it is in the best interests of the child.

Petitioning the Court

If you want to modify your child custody order, you must file a petition with the court asking for a modification of your current order. You must prove that there has been a substantial change in circumstances since the court issued your last custody order.

Reasons the Court May Award Child Custody Modification

Some of the reasons a court may grant a child custody modification include, but are not limited to:

  • The child is in physical, emotional, sexual, or psychological danger
  • A parent is not demonstrating proper parental responsibility (for example, not picking the child up from school on time, not providing a suitable living environment, abusing substances in the child’s presence)
  • Parent circumstances have changed in some way
  • The non-custodial parent relocated closer to the custodial parent
  • The employment schedule of the non-custodial parent is different
  • The child’s preference has changed

You may request a modification of a child custody and visitation order at any time if you can show that a substantial change in circumstances has occurred since the first order. You will also need to demonstrate how the change is in the best interests of the child.

Contact Los Angeles Family Law Professionals at The Berman Law Group

The parent who wishes to amend child custody arrangements will usually do so with the assistance of an attorney. The Berman Law Group handles child custody modifications. Our family law specialists will work with you to determine your needs. Call us at (310) 788-3837 if you have child custody modification concerns or needs.

We serve Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, Brentwood, Santa Monica, Pacific Palisades, and the surrounding Greater Los Angeles communities.

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