Modification Empowering You to Move Forward

Hanover Child Custody Modification Lawyer

Visitation and custody disputes give rise to some of the most emotional issues faced by family courts. Judges must balance parental rights with children’s best interests and be careful not to disrupt settled custody orders. Significant custody alterations often require a thorough investigation into your child’s wellbeing and the court’s jurisdiction.

Housing and financial situations are likely to change after divorce, often requiring parenting plan revisions. Working with a compassionate Hanover child custody modification lawyer may reduce the stress of reopening sensitive visitation matters. Because our extraordinary team has over 35 combined years of exclusive family law experience, our attorneys are prepared to help you understand your parental rights and discuss alternatives to comprehensive judicial intervention.

Regulations for Modifying Child Custody Orders in Hanover

Judges may issue child custody and visitation orders before parents have the opportunity to adequately reorganize their lives after divorce. The Massachusetts Child Custody Jurisdiction Act controls whether Commonwealth judges can legally modify visitation orders. This law states that, unless there is an emergency situation, the child must reside in the Commonwealth with the custodial parent for at least six consecutive months if a Massachusetts family court did not enter the original custody declaration.

Judges may only alter child custody determinations under Mass. Gen. Law, Chap. 208, §28 as long as there was a relevant and significant change in one or more parties’ circumstances and a modification of custody serves the child’s best interest. Alternatively, parents may jointly petition to modify a custody order if the changes would benefit the child or an emergency arises.

Material and Substantial Changes Permitting Custody Modification Petitions

If an interested party objects to a proposed modification, judges must decide whether circumstances have materially and substantially changed. Grounds for modification of custody commonly involve alterations to a parent’s work schedule, job, residence, or financial stability. For example, a non-custodial parent may request shared custody and visitation once they find a steady job and housing after a divorce.

Emergencies also qualify as grounds to modify custody orders. Courts may temporarily or permanently change a visitation arraignment if:

  • A custodial parent dies or develops a serious illness
  • One party abandons or endangers the child
  • There were instances of abuse or negligent
  • One parent is deployed
  • One party was charged with a serious crime or imprisoned
  • The child requires protection or out-of-state medical care

One of our experienced lawyers in Hanover can help you petition for emergency child custody and visitation modifications. The safety and wellbeing of your child should always come first.

Best Interest Standards Governing Changes to Custody Decrees

While the appropriate grounds for requesting a modification must exist, the child’s best interest still controls custody and visitation determinations. When determining what is in a child’s best interests, judges must generally consider:

  • Any instances of physical, psychological, or sexual abuse
  • Any parental history of drug dependence, alcoholism, or criminal convictions
  • The parents’ ability to work together to support their children
  • The child’s wishes and current situational stability
  • The child’s mental health and current living conditions
  • Any special medical or educational needs of the child
  • Instances of parental desertion or neglect

The court may appoint a qualified guardian ad litem to analyze these factors and make educated recommendations. With the help of an experienced attorney, co-parents can develop an agreement on the modification on child custody that can be submitted to the court to be entered as a judgment. However, judges must still consider the above factors and, if the proposed modification is one the court believes may destabilize or negatively impact the child, the court may reject even a joint proposal.

Speak with a Hanover Child Custody Modification Attorney

At O’Connor Family Law, we understand that your child’s needs come first. Whether you are seeking a modification to your current custody order, or you are contesting a petition to change your existing arrangement, we want to help you protect your family and parental rights. For more information about how to handle these cases, contact one of our Hanover child custody modification lawyers today.

What Our Clients Say

Divorce Is Not a Loss - See How Some of Our Clients Have Overcome Their Situations.
  • Very sensitive, responsive, attentive, and professional.

    “We used this law firm for guardianship for my son, they were fantastic. Very sensitive, responsive, attentive, and professional. We had unusual challenges with our son turning 18 during Covid and the ...”

    - David
  • I can’t thank her enough!

    “With her desire to gain a deep understanding of my situation and level of expertise, we successfully obtained the outcome I needed to move on with my life in a healthy way. I can’t thank her enough!”

    - Tanya
  • I highly recommend this family law firm and wouldn’t want anyone else representing me in this tough time in my life!

    “Caitlyn and Lori have made this horrible time in my life a lot easier for me to get through. Unbelievable, the amount of effort and dedication this fantastic team puts in on a daily basis to make sure ...”

    - Former Client
  • I am forever grateful for the team's incredible efforts to make my stepdaughter's dream of having "a normal life" with her dad come true.

    “I can't say enough positive things about the O'Connor Family Law team. Atty. O'Connor, Atty. Fletcher, Lori, Sean, everyone on the team is amazing. Over the last two years, the team has represented my ...”

    - Lauren
  • They were always quick to respond and provided the information I was seeking.

    “I recently reached out to O'Connor Family law for some general divorce information via email. They were always quick to respond and provided the information I was seeking. They were not pressuring me ...”

    - Melanie
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How We Operate

Empowering You to Move Forward 
  • Education

    We don't believe in telling you what to do. Our team's goal is to educate and provide you with favorable options so that you feel empowered to choose the best outcome for yours and your family's needs. 

  • Team-Focused

    When you work with our firm you become part of a collaborative team. You can rest assured that you have a team of two attorneys and a paralegal behind you, who are always up to date on your case. 

  • Compassionate & Aggressive

    When it comes to divorce amicability is our first step - when that doesn't work, we are not afraid to throw on the gloves. As seasoned litigators, we understand that litigation is not a game; it is fighting for justice for you and your children.

Helping You Make the Best Out of Your Situation

Call 774-214-2137 or fill out the form below to get started on your next step.

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