When does a change warrant a modification in custody?

When the judge issues the final custody order in your divorce, this decree is based on the best interests of your child based on the circumstances at the time. Although your case is closed, GeorgiaLegalAid.org explains that there may be grounds for filing a new case to have child custody or visitation modified. Georgia family law includes guidelines to help you understand when taking such an action may be worthwhile.

If the current visitation plan is no longer in your child’s best interests, you may seek a modification from the court. After this is granted, you cannot ask for another modification for two years unless there is a change in conditions that affect the schedule. There is also a two-year limit on how often your child can request to move from one parent’s house to the other. The court takes this request seriously, particularly after the age of 11, but the judge still has the final say in determining whether it is in his or her best interests.

Because the final order takes all of the relevant circumstances into account, a change must come about before a modification can be considered. If it is a situation that was already present at the time of your first decree, it must have improved or deteriorated to the point that it affects your child. A completely new situation that arises may also be enough to warrant you filing a new case for a custody modification. All the relevant factors specific to your case will be considered. Since this is general information, it should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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