At A People’s Choice, we provide flat fee legal document preparation services for custody order modifications. Contact us today for more information about how we can help you change your custody order. Read on for a quick overview of the process.
Meet the Required Standard to Change a Custody Order
Before requesting to change a custody order, the moving party (the parent seeking the change) must demonstrate a significant change in circumstances from when the order was first granted. For example, if a parent was offered employment in another state they might ask for a modification. Sometimes as children age, they request or require different custody arrangements as well. A parent might ask to change a custody order if the divorce occurred when the child was very young to gain more visitation time. Many times original custody orders do not include “step-up plans,” which gradually increase the amount of time one parent spends with the child. Often when children enter grade school, parents need to change a custody order to include this type of plan.
Parents should not ask to change a custody order simply because they do not believe the original agreement was fair. “Getting the short end of the stick,” at the initial settlement is not grounds for modification. You must demonstrate and document a need for change if you wish to modify the order.
Draft the Paperwork
At A People’s Choice, we can help you draft the motion and Request for Order documents and your personal statement to file with the court. Once filed, you will serve the opposing party these documents and blank response documents. We can help you navigate through this entire process. To succeed, you must fill out and file these papers correctly.
Attend Court Hearing
Parents receive a court date after filing. You may use mediation services to reach an agreement about the modification before the hearing. If you agree to new terms before the hearing, you can enter a stipulation with the court with the details. If you do not reach an agreement before the hearing, both sides will present evidence before a judge. Then, the judge will make a final determination.
Prepare Findings & Order After Hearing
After the hearing, the judge will order a party to prepare a document called a Findings and Order After Hearing or FOAH. After submission to the court, the FOAH becomes the official court order. Contact us if you need help completing this form or filing the required documents to change a custody order. You will need to complete the Findings and Order within a specified period for time or possibly be sanctioned by the court.
Need help? Call A People’s Choice at 800-747-2780 for more information.
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