Circumstances That Warrant Child Custody Modification

When One Can Seek a Change

When a child custody order no longer meets the needs of the child in question, parents can seek a modification to that custody order. In order to do so, they often must be able to prove that a significant and material change in circumstances has occurred and that a change to the child custody order will meet the child’s needs.

What situations qualify as meeting that requirement?

Change in Schedule

Perhaps the situation that comes to mind most often is a change in schedule; this is often associated with the gain or loss of employment but can relate to varying school commitments or extracurricular activities, as well. Although a parent’s income should not be a factor in determining custody, the logistics of a different work schedule can impact the child’s routine. Changes in schedules such as these can be a significant alteration in circumstances to allow one to seek modification of a court order.


Life’s circumstances may dictate that a parent relocates to another city or state. Whether that reason is for a new relationship or a new job, parents often wish to take their child with them, but in order to do so, they must seek a modification of their existing custody order or a mutual agreement of all parents. They cannot simply pack up their child’s things and take them with them. Frequently, the parent seeking to relocate with the child must be able to show that taking the child with them is in the child’s best interest. Differing legal standards apply, so the assistance of family law counsel who is experienced in move-away and relocation cases will help navigate those challenges.

Change in the Child’s Needs

The passage of time may qualify as a change of circumstances warranting modification of child custody orders. Often, a child custody order modification is necessary because the child’s needs have changed over time. As a child gets older, they no longer have a need for certain things and, instead, have other needs to be met. Parents should be ready to prove that the child’s needs have changed and that modifying the existing custody order will meet those new needs.

Seek the Help of a Child Custody Attorney

If your child custody order no longer works or meets your child’s needs, you have the right to seek a change to that order. You are best served by working with an attorney who can evaluate your situation and provide you with the guidance necessary to make moves that are best for you and your child. At TRABOLSI | LEVY | GABBARD LLP, we are committed to meeting your needs while keeping your child’s best interests at the forefront of the work we do.

Learn more about child custody and modification in Los Angeles County by calling us at (310) 455-8364 or by visiting our website.

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