Change is a part of all our lives. Whether we want to acknowledge those changes or not, the only thing we can predict in life is that is unpredictable is that change happens regularly. the changes that we see in our lives can be in several different areas. One of the areas that your life may see some change is regarding the circumstances surrounding childcare city. Having gone through a family law case previously one of the most difficult parts of a modification case is acknowledging that you may need to go back and update your orders to reflect the current circumstances of your life.

When it comes to modifying a child custody order there are several factors to bear in mind. the first is that not every change in circumstances necessarily requires or would allow for a modification in court. With that said, in today’s blog post from the Law Office of Bryan Fagan, I would like to share with you my thoughts on how child custody modifications work and a little bit more about the circumstances that could lead to a successful modification for your child custody orders. so much of a child custody modification case depends upon the specific circumstances that you and your family find yourselves in. Let’s examine the most important information on this subject so you know how to proceed if a modification becomes necessary for your family.

How do you change an existing custody, visitation, or child support order?

The only way to formally change or modify an existing child custody or child support order would be to file for a modification case in the same family court that issued your initial order. If you have moved, then you would need to first determine whether a court in your new location has jurisdiction to hear the case. In Texas, a family court obtains jurisdiction to hear a child custody modification case if you have resided in that county for at least 90 days and in Texas for at least the past six months. Otherwise, you will likely need to file your modification case in the same county that issued the original order.

To change or modify a court order you must go to court and file the modification case. Many parents negotiate with their co-parents on temporary or informal modifications of court orders. There is nothing wrong or illegal about doing this. However, you need to understand that either one of you can change your mind when it comes to off-the-books modifications like this, and that leaves both of you in a precarious position. Rather, going to court and obtaining a formal modification blue family court judge is the most definite way to modify your child custody orders.

It is possible to modify a custody order without hiring a lawyer. There are forms online from websites like where you can access information that can help you to find out the best ways to modify a court order on your own. However, the most efficient way to modify a child custody order in Texas would be to hire an experienced family law attorney. The lawyers with the Law Office of Bryan Fagan are equipped to serve you and your family in this way. A free-of-charge consultation can be set up online or over the phone. We welcome people to meet with us in either of our two Houston area locations, over the phone and via video.

Another factor to consider when it comes to modifying a child custody order without the assistance of a lawyer is that it is best to attempt to do so only if your case is an uncontested situation. An uncontested family law case involves circumstances where You and your Co-parent agree on all factors relating to the case hey Matt there will be no negotiation needed. Only then would I ever recommend attempting to proceed with a child custody modification without the assistance of an attorney. Even then, drafting court orders can be extremely difficult. As well, it is probably never truly in your interest temp to check us out gas tuition modification without the assistance of an experienced Texas family law attorney.

Who can file a modification case on child custody?

Either you or your Co-parent can file a modification case in a Texas family law court. Bear in mind that persons other than you or your Co-parent can also file a modification case if he or she is listed as a party under the current child custody order. This would be a circumstance involving a grandparent or other relative who has conservatorship rights tier child. For instance, if in your first child custody case it was determined that your child’s best interests were served by him or her living with a grandparent or other relative then that grandparent or rather relative could come back in theoretically file for a child custody modification.

Additional requirements for the filing of a child custody modification by a person other than you or your Co-parent would be that person would need to have had actual care, control, and possession of your child for at least six months ending not more than 90 days before the date you filed a modification case with the court. That person must have lived with the child and the child’s parent for at least six months ending not more than 90 days before the date that person files their modification case. Finally, the only other circumstance in which a person could file a modification on a child custody order would be to appear she is a close relative and both you and your Co-parent are no longer living.

Outside of the people that I have already mentioned, the attorney general’s Texas child support division can also file a modification case. This will be done in a circumstance where the attorney general learns of a situation involving your family where a child support modification will be justified. It may happen that so someone’s income increases, decreases, or a circumstance regarding the child changes. Remember that the attorney general’s office does not represent you or your Co-parent in this case. Rather, they represent the state Of Texas and their interests in any modification case.

Hiring a family law attorney for your modification case

There is a range of options available to you when it comes to hiring a lawyer for your modification case. A key piece to this discussion is that hiring a lawyer is important to be able to receive accurate advice on the circumstances that involve you. You don’t know what you don’t know, as far as the world of family law is concerned. You are likely missing out on a lot of information that can be helpful to you and your family. Hiring a lawyer is the most efficient way to receive information like this.

What you may not have known or considered is that you can hire lawyers to perform various functions for you in the world of Texas family law. You can hire an attorney in the traditional way to represent you in all aspects of the case, provide advice, negotiate with your co-parent, and draft documentation for you. In other situations, you may prefer to hire a lawyer to only draft paperwork, attend hearings or mediation with you or just provide help in other areas. Most family law attorneys are willing to be flexible with their representation of you. When you are meeting with an attorney you can ask him or her about issues like this and see what they think. 

What does it cost to file a modification case for child custody?

There is a basic filing fee associated with filing your modification case. The specific dollar value of the fee will depend on what county you are filing your case in. A fee schedule is available through the district or county clerk’s website. If you are a low-income individual or otherwise unable to afford to pay the filing fee you can usually file an affidavit with your petition for the modification. You would need to disclose your circumstances and make an argument as to why you cannot afford to pay the filing fee. Usually proof of pauper status depends on determining your income, bank account balances, and whether you or your children are on government assistance for food, housing, or anything else. 

How long do child custody modification cases take?

A lawyer’s favorite answer to give when asked any question is it depends. This is the same answer the lawyer should give you regarding the question of how long your child custody modification case may take. The answer to this question depends entirely upon the specific circumstances of your case. Many modification cases are straightforward and can be solved with a quick session of mediation at the beginning of the case. On the other hand, other modification cases cannot be mediated all that well. In those circumstances is more likely that a trial would be necessary to solve the issues that the modification has been filed under.

In a child support modification case, the party who files the case is known as the petitioner. Your hand, if child support or child custody modification case is filed by your Co-parent then you would be the respondent. This may not be the most pressing question in your mind but clearing up any issues regarding party names can help you to understand different blog posts or articles that you find on the Internet.

What are the chances that a judge modifies your court-ordered child support?

A family court judge there does not apply different bases for judgment to your child custody modification case than he or she has in any other. Rather, family court judges Determine whether a material and substantial change have occurred in your life, the life of your Co-parent, or in one of your child’s lives before granting the modification request. Even then, he or she will need to determine that the modification is in the best interests of your child. The bar to clear for a modification case for child custody can be quite high. It is different than many people believe entering into a child custody case.

When it comes to child support in the modification of a child support order, it must have been at least three years since that order was entered or the correct amount of child support must differ from your current amount of child support by either $100 per month or by 20%. At least when it comes to child support there is some math you can look to one determining the likelihood that you are child custody case will be approved by a family court judge.

A material and substantial change in circumstances for updating child support or cash medical support mean that at least one of the following circumstances must have a curd. First, the income of you or your Co-parent must have either increased or decreased. Next, whichever one of you is ordered to pay child support must also be legally responsible for additional children that were not before the court. Finally, if the medical insurance coverage has changed or your child’s living arrangements have changed then that would be a good reason to file for a child support modification.

Filing frivolous child support or child custody modification suit is not a good idea. This is not a zero-risk proposition where you simply would not have the relief granted that you are seeking. Rather, and you could be assessed attorney’s fees in certain circumstances.

I have seen Texas family courts state that a decrease in a parent’s salary can be a material and substantial change in circumstances that support a modification in child support. This is not uncommon. However, an important part of this discussion is that even when it comes to subject matter like this is being able to have the perspective of an experienced family law attorney guiding you. An attorney will be able to look at your specific circumstances and help you determine whether or not it is likely that you will have your modification request granted. If nothing else, meeting with a family law attorney before filing a modification case can help save you time.

Is having a baby material and substantial change in circumstances? Paragraph new If you are the parent who is paying child support then you’re having another baby would count as a material and substantial change in circumstances. In this case, the court may consider creating a new child support order that would account for the new baby in your need to support him or her. 

On the other hand, comma, if you are the parent who is receiving child support and your new child, has the same father as your other children then the baby is still material and substantial change in circumstances. in that case, you would need to file a paternity suit or suit affecting the parent-child relationship. You can work with an experienced family law attorney to do this or I can even contact the office of the attorney general to see if they would be able to assist you in this endeavor the guideline amounts for child support in Texas R for one child 20% of the parent’s net monthly income would be paid in child support each month that percentage would increase by 5% up until you reach most 50% of the parent’s net monthly income. this changes somewhat if the paying parent has children who are not involved in the current case. This can change the core SUV the child custody modification if you are talking about modifying child support.

Another circumstance that may be relevant to your case is what can happen if your Co-parent chooses to move with the children further away from you. Would you have to continue to pay child support and the increased costs of travel associated with being able to see your children? The reality of the situation is that usually, the parent who moves the children away would have to be responsible for paying the increased costs associated with travel to see the children. Assuming that any modification to these costs would be in the best interest of the children then it is likely that this is the way a court would rule.

Questions about the material contained in today’s blog post? Contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan

if you have any questions about the material contained in today’s blog post, please do not hesitate to contact the Law Office of Bryan Fagan. Our licensed family law attorneys offer a free of charge consultation six days a week in person, over the phone, and via video. These consultations are a great way for you to learn more about the world of Texas family law as well as about how your family circumstances may be impacted by the filing of a divorce or child custody case. Thank you for your interest in our law office and we hope that you will join us again tomorrow as we continue to post interesting and relevant information about the world of Texas family law.