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5 common reasons for post-divorce custody modifications

Some parents who split up are able to work out a reasonable parenting plan that functions well for years in the future and which the court readily approves. Others rely on a judge’s order, which often does not consider the many unique needs of a family. However, even a solidly crafted parenting plan may not work forever, and there may come a time when the family must make adjustments and modifications.

Again, those modifications may be something the parents can work out together, but many return to the judge or seek mediation when they cannot agree on how to adjust their plans. These parents should be prepared to present documentation and other evidence supporting their request for modification for reasons like these and others:

  • Changes in a parent’s work schedule
  • The relocation of one parent
  • The loss of a job that prevents a parent from complying with court-ordered support payments
  • Changes in a parents home that create an unsafe environment for the children
  • Growing children with changing needs

Making changes in a parenting plan may be necessary in a pinch, and it is ideal when parents can agree to these spur-of-the-moment changes without a tussle. However, it is always smart for parents to present plans for long-term modifications in writing to the Pennsylvania family court for approval. This way, the parent seeking the modification will have the authority of the court behind him or her, which may help with enforcing the changes and avoiding accusations of violating the original court order.