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Modifying child custody

Most of us are aware what the term custody means in relation to children of a divorced couple. Physical custody involves determining where the child will live, whereas legal custody refers to establishing who will make decisions for the child. No matter the scenario, child custody is often an emotionally charged subject.

Every so often one or both parents may find a need to change a previous custody agreement. Either because of work or school situations, a move or financial need, the best interests of a particular child may change over time. When this happens, parents can seek to modify child custody. In the state of California as well as many others, what is seen by the family court to be in the best interest of the child usually trumps all. Other things may factor in such as health, age and school involvement, but best interest remains paramount.

In the situation where both parents agree to modify a previous custody arrangement, the steps to do so, however detailed, can be relatively painless. When parents are not in agreement, things can get sticky. California family court usually centers custody arrangements and modifications around a parenting plan. This plan outlines the details of custody to best satisfy both parents while also being in the best interest of the child. The parenting plan can be created and agreed to during the out-of-court process of mediation and then recommended for final court approval. If, however, parents are still unable to come to an agreement, the decision to modify custody will lie with the family court.

In order to avoid repeated requests to modify custody, family courts ask that parents show substantial need to change a previous arrangement. A family law attorney may be able to identify and communicate these reasons to the family court on your behalf.

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Minutes From Downtown Sacramento

Our office is conveniently located off Highway 50, just three miles from the Sacramento County Family Courthouse and minutes from Downtown Sacramento. For your convenience, we accept all major credit cards.

Victoria S. Linder Law Office
5303 Folsom Boulevard
Sacramento, CA 95819

Phone: 916-905-4805
Fax: 916-498-0127
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