As a parent, you may find it distressing if your current custody order is not serving your child’s best interests. Fortunately, a compassionate Suwanee child custody modification lawyer can help you make adjustments to your current arrangement to better serve your family’s needs.

Pursuing a modification of parenting time can be a difficult and even hostile process. You can benefit from hiring a skilled child custody attorney who can provide advice and protect your child’s best interests in court.

Reasons for Seeking a Modification of Child Custody

Official Code of Georgia Annotated §19-9-3 states that a child custody order must serve the child’s best interests and promote their welfare and happiness. However, because circumstances change over time, previous custody orders may no longer serve their intended purpose. A custody modification attorney in our area can work to adjust your existing court order by asserting that it no longer serves your child’s needs.

Periodic Review of Parenting Orders

A court may review and alter custody orders every two years pursuant to O.C.G.A. §19-9-3(b). A parent may request such a review even if there has been no significant change in either party’s circumstances. However, the parent seeking a modification must demonstrate that their proposed changes are in the child’s best interests.

Additionally, under O.C.G.A. §19-9-3(a)(5-6), custody may be modified once every two years based upon the preference of the child, as long as they are at least 11 years old. However, the local family court would have to determine whether the child’s preference would be in their best interests before granting their wishes.

Demonstrating that a modification is best for a child is not always as easy as parents expect. An experienced Suwanee lawyer can help you present a strong case for or against child custody modification.

Material Change in Circumstances

Sometimes a major change of circumstances happens for one parent, both parents, or the child. Children are likely to go through many material changes as they grow up, and their needs may change as well. Changes in circumstances which may warrant a custody modification include:

  • One parent wishes to move;
  • Domestic abuse;
  • New employment circumstances for either parent;
  • Changing medical or educational needs of the child; and
  • Substance abuse by a parent.

Family courts may adjust custody based on these circumstances regardless of when the last custody order was entered. In other words, the two-year statutory limit on modifying custody does not apply when a family’s circumstances have changed substantially. Any modification must as always be in the best interests of the child.

While a change in circumstances may seem obvious to the parent requesting a modification, proving the necessary elements in a court is a complex process. A skilled attorney can present the facts and arguments needed to modify child custody.

Petitioning the Court for a Custody Modification

A parent seeking to modify custody will need to prove that the proposed modification is in their child’s best interests. If the request to modify to filed less than two years since the last custody order was entered, the parent will also need to demonstrate that there is a sufficient reason for modification.

The other parent may disagree with the proposed change in custody, and parents often tell different versions of the facts surrounding these circumstances. A parent will likely need to present evidence, question witnesses, and follow elaborate court procedures to obtain a positive outcome. Retaining the help of a local family lawyer could increase the chances of successfully modifying child custody in Suwanee.

Contact a Suwanee Child Custody Modification Attorney for Assistance

Child custody arrangements should serve the needs of your family and your child’s best interests. If your current order is no longer right for you, a Suwanee child custody modification lawyer can help.

Compassionate legal counsel can present a persuasive case for a modification that benefits you and your child. Call today to get help with your case.

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