In most cases of legal separation or divorce, one of the most controversial issues that come up is child custody. Not only can there be complications regarding the custody of the children, but there are also problems and arguments related to the set child visitation schedule.
- Every state has rules and regulations in place related to child custody and visitation. In Wilmington, North Carolina, custody decisions are typically taken in a manner that would be fair to both parents and would ensure the well-being of the child in question. At the base of all regulations and decisions regarding child custody modification, the health and welfare of the child is always a priority.
As far as child custody modification is concerned, it is important that you consult a good child custody lawyer in Wilmington, North Carolina before you proceed with anything. This is important because once child custody and visitation rules have been issued, the judge expects both parties to abide by them. That is why child custody modification or changes to a child visitation schedule can be difficult to get approved. However, the visitation rights are not set in stone, and if circumstances change, one can always request modifications by following the required legal process.
Child Custody Modification in Wilmington, North Carolina
Under North Carolina custody law, the rights of both parents are protected, but the guiding principle that courts abide by is always in the best interest of the child. It is extremely rare for judges to make a spontaneous decision regarding child custody modification. But if you have a valid reason, the judge will review the entire case, listen to the arguments put forward by your lawyer and make a decision keeping in mind your situation, the other parent’s situation, and the child’s well-being.
In the majority of cases, the court will grant both parents reasonable access to the child. If there is a disagreement regarding child custody and visitation, the court may order both parents to attend mediation so that they can come to a reasonable solution. Sometimes, one parent may be moving out of state because of a job or to be closer to a sick family member. In such situations, visitation can be difficult, and hence mediation may be required. In most cases, the mediation is done before the parent moves out of state so that the child custody or child visitation schedule is determined before they leave.
- Whenever child custody modification or alterations to child visitation schedule are in the process, it is generally recommended that you get good legal representation who can review the custody agreement for you to ensure your best interests are met. The custody agreement is a legal document that is enforced by the court. Failure to follow the agreement can result in serious penalties. In most cases, it is always a better idea to come to an agreement outside the court as it is both cheaper and less time-consuming for all parties involved.
Modifications to Child Visitation Schedule and Enforcement of Visitation
While custody modifications are generally not encouraged in Wilmington, North Carolina, the legal system is designed to be more flexible when it comes to the child visitation schedule if the situation absolutely requires it. For example, there can be a time when your child has grown up and would prefer to spend more time with one family member. There can also be situations where there is a major change in the household or family dynamics. The courts do consider these factors and may allow the parent to modify their child's visitation schedule or even child custody if it is in the best interests of the child.
However, it is important to understand that you cannot arbitrarily change visitation rights on your own. Only the courts can do that. Even if one parent makes a verbal agreement, this is not legal, and you can be held accountable and face serious legal penalties if something goes wrong. That is why it is recommended that you consult a North Carolina family law lawyer and follow the required legal process to change child custody or your child visitation schedule.
Consult with a Family Law Lawyer to Discuss Modifying Child Custody or Your Child Visitation Schedule
At Speaks Law Firm, PC Family Law Division, our lawyers understand that situations can change and there may be a need for child custody modification or changes to a child visitation schedule. Our Wilmington family law attorneys know how the law works in Wilmington, North Carolina, and the proper documentation and arguments that need to be presented in court to ensure that the modifications are made smoothly. Reach out to us today schedule a free consultation and discuss any modification issues that need to be settled in or outside of court.
Speaks Law Firm, PC Family Law Division
300 N. 3rd St. Suite 310
Wilmington, NC 28401