Those who read this blog are likely considering divorce, going through a divorce, or are looking at ways they can modify their divorce agreements. Therefore, these Ohioans are well aware of the emotions that can come into play when finalizing divorce legal issues such as property division and alimony. Oftentimes, one of the most difficult matters to settle is child custody, as both parents may equally love their child and seek sole custody.
Even once a child custody arrangement is determined, however, it can still be modified. Under Ohio law, certain conditions must exist before a modification can be made, and the onus is on the individual seeking to modify the existing agreement, as the state has established a presumption in favor of the current custodian parent. In order to successfully obtain a modification, a parent must satisfactorily show that a change of circumstances has arisen that has had a direct and adverse impact on the parent's child.
A change of circumstances can arise under many situations. A change in a custodial parent's mental stability or health, frequent relocation, and abuse and/or neglect may give rise to a change of circumstances that adversely affects the child. Many times, the court will have to determine if the sometimes uproarious change of custody arrangement will be outweighed by its benefits. This often means that the court will again have to weigh what is in the best interests of the child.
Far too often, a contentious divorce threatens the relationship between parents and their children. Fortunately, though, the legal system works to give parents the opportunity to change the child's custody arrangements in hopes of preserving what is best for him or her. It may sound simple enough, but these matters are often quite complicated. Therefore, those who find themselves in such a situation may benefit from consulting with an experienced family attorney.
Source: Ohio Legal Services, "Change of Custody Fact Sheet," accessed on June 28, 2015