Parents in Indiana who share custody will typically either negotiate their own parenting plan or have a judge facilitate the creation of a reasonable custody order. For most families, some degree of shared custody will be the ideal outcome, as children benefit from having both parents involved in their lives even after they separate from one another.
In theory, both of you need to uphold these specific custody terms set in your existing parenting plan. In practice, such documents can become outdated in a matter of months when someone changes jobs or children move to a different school district.
When can you potentially go back to court and ask for a custody modification in Indiana?
Any significant change might warrant a modification
Indiana family law judges will typically have to consider numerous factors when handling custody matters. For example, they look at the schedule for the parents at work and for the children at school. They consider the relationship the parents have with the children and even health matters when deciding how to divide parenting time.
If any of the major factors influencing a family’s circumstances change, then there may be reason to ask for a modification. A parent starting a new job, a doctor diagnosing a child with a debilitating medical condition or one parent suspecting the other of abuse could all be reasons for parents to go back to court to request a modification.
Typically, there will need to be evidence affirming someone’s claim of a substantial change in circumstances. However, in situations where parents agree about specific modifications, they may only need to pursue an uncontested modification, and specific evidence may not be necessary.
Are you ready for more parenting time?
One of the more common reasons that people decide to pursue a modification is that they want to spend more time with their children. Especially if your situation was unstable in the early days of your shared custody arrangements, you may have received limited parenting time or only visitation rights.
Now that you have a place to live or have addressed the other issues that may have affected your parenting, you could potentially convince a judge to grant you more time with your children. Rather than simply asking the other parent for additional time, it may be a smarter move to go to court and officially increase your parenting time.
Making a formal update to your existing Indiana custody order could be beneficial for you and for your children.