Changing your child visitation agreement could be necessary if you or your spouse's life circumstances evolve over time. Imagine you have a new job and work schedule that make your current weekend visitation schedule unworkable. Alternatively, imagine you become ill and can't visit your child often anymore. Perhaps your child's circumstances change, and this requires an adjustment to the visitation schedule.
In many cases, the other parent of the child will agree that a change is necessary and assist you in finding a workable solution. In other cases, if the other parent disagrees with your request for modification, you might have to appeal to a Florida family law court to approve the change. When filing an application to modify your child visitation orders like this, you will need to prove the following requirements to gain the court's approval:
- There has been a substantial change in circumstances that stands to significantly affect the relationship between the parent and child and the ability to carry out visits.
- The change in circumstances was unanticipated at the time the initial visitation orders were created.
- Altering the child visitation agreement in the way that the parent wants is in the best interests of the child.
When a parent can prove the above three points, he or she will stand the best chance of gaining court approval for a modification to the current visitation orders. For this reason, parents may want to discuss their case for modification with an experienced Florida child custody attorney who can help them develop a good strategy to present their cases before the court.