As the years go by, children undergo a lot of changes: different schools, new interests and engagement in activities that may affect a crafted parenting plan.
Parents may also undergo changes like:
- Career moves
- New relationships
- Or relocation
All of these factors may require a modification to your:
Our post-divorce modification attorneys at Moore, Schulman & Moore, APC, can help guide you through the process of modifying a family court order.
We always have the best interest of your family in mind and we will skillfully litigate your case in court to assert your rights.
What is Post-Decree Modification?
In California family law, a post-decree modification refers to a legal process that allows one or both parties involved in a divorce or legal separation case to request changes to the terms of the final court order or decree. Life circumstances can change after a divorce or legal separation, and these changes may necessitate modifications to the original court order. The final court order, often referred to as the judgment or decree, outlines various aspects of the divorce or separation, such as child custody, child support, spousal support, and division of property.
To pursue a post-decree modification in California, the party seeking the modification typically needs to file a formal request with the court. Both parties may be required to provide documentation and evidence supporting their case. The court will then review the circumstances and determine whether a modification is warranted. It's essential to note that not all requests for modification are granted, and the court will consider the best interests of the children and other relevant factors in making its decision.
What Is Considered a “Change in Circumstance"?
To seek modification of a Family Court order, a "significant change in circumstances" must be shown. Any life event that affects one or both party's ability to comply with a custody, visitation, or support order may qualify as a "change in circumstance."
Examples of a significant change in circumstance include:
- Loss of a Job or Significant Reduction in Pay: If a parent paying child support or spousal support experiences a job loss or a substantial decrease in income, they may seek a modification to adjust support payments accordingly.
- Changes in the Custodial Parent's Ability to Care for the Child: If the custodial parent experiences a decline in physical or mental health that affects their ability to care for the child, the other parent may seek a modification of custody or visitation arrangements.
- Relocation of the Custodial Parent (Especially Long Distances or Out of State): When the custodial parent plans to move a significant distance away, especially out of state, it can impact existing custody and visitation agreements. The noncustodial parent may request a modification to adjust the parenting plan. Common reasons for relocation include better job opportunities for the parent, better academic opportunities for the child, increased family support, etc.
- Remarriage of the Custodial Parent: The remarriage of the custodial parent may influence the dynamics within the household and, in some cases, may be a factor considered in modification requests, particularly if the new spouse's presence has an impact on the child's well-being.
- Health Issues or Disabilities: If a parent or child experiences a significant health issue or disability after the divorce or separation, it may be grounds for modifying support or custody arrangements to accommodate the changed circumstances.
- Changes in Child's Needs: As children grow and their needs evolve, modifications may be sought to adapt child support, visitation schedules, or other aspects of the court order to better address the child's current requirements.
- Educational Needs of the Child: If the educational needs of the child change, such as a move to a different school or the need for specialized education, it may be a valid reason for seeking modifications in custody or support.
Modification of Child Custody in San Diego
Modification of a child custody order can be issued if the custodial parent is no longer able to take proper care of the child; if the custodial parent has to relocate due to a change in circumstance; if the the non-custodial parent has reason to be given joint custody rights; and more. Modification of custody can be sought whenever it is "necessary and proper" to serve the best interest of the children.
Our child custody modification attorneys are experts in child custody and visitation disputes and can develop strategies to help you resolve your custody issue.
Modification of Child Support & Spousal Support
Modification of a support order can be issued if there is a significant change in circumstance affecting:
- The child's basic necessities
- The supporting party's ability to pay
- The receiving party's income
For example, if the party that has been ordered to pay support suffers a pay cut, then they may be able to get the support order modified to an amount they can afford. Similarly, if the custodial parent remarries and their household income increases significantly, then the non-custodial parent could request to pay less child support.
A custodial parent may also be able to get a child support order modified if the needs of the child increase due to a change in the child's circumstance, such as the development of a health issue or approved relocation to an area with a higher cost of living.
Opposing Modification Requests
If you find yourself in a situation where your ex-spouse is trying to litigate unreasonably, our lawyers can help provide vigorous representation in court to defend your reputation and preserve your rights.
Get extraordinary representation for post-divorce modification disputes in San Diego with our Certified Family Law Specialists who have decades of experience with the goal of getting the best outcome in the most cost-effective manner.
Modifying a Prenuptial or Postnuptial Agreement After a Divorce
Even after a dissolution of marriage becomes final, circumstances may change and both parties may want to modify or set aside a court order. If this is the case, you likely need to draft a post-divorce agreement. If you or your ex-spouse's circumstances have changed in some way, we can advocate for your best interests in the court's modification of orders or help you come to a settlement with your ex-spouse that is in your best interest.
Just like prenuptial agreements, post-divorce and postnuptial agreements must be negotiated and drafted with the guidance and care of an experienced lawyer. If you need a quality attorney to draft a postnuptial agreement of any type, we are ready and willing to help.
- How Can I Get More Time with My Kids?
- Can I Modify My Custody Arrangement Without Going to Court?
- Divorce Information & FAQ
Move forward with your San Diego modification case – Contact us today!
Certified Ten of our attorneys have earned the distinction of certified family law specialist.
Equipped Skilled in litigation and mediation, we are prepared to handle any type of divorce.
Attentive We respond quickly to clients and ensure they are always informed about their case.
Seasoned Our professionals have more than 200 years of combined family law experience.
Request a Consultation Today
David Schulman Founding Partner & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Erik Moore Founding Partner & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Julie Westerman Partner & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Jeremy Boyer Partner & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Kevin Polis Partner & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Lesa Christenson Of Counsel & Board Certified Expert in Family Law
Bryan Yerger Associate
Sarah Bear Associate
Jillian Minter Associate
Isabel Steinmetz Associate
Lindsey Dentino Associate
Lauren Haack Associate