Noncustodial parents need to follow a certain requirement to spend time with their children; this is called parenting time order. Parenting time order establishes when a noncustodial parent can be with their child or children born within a partnership or handed down due to a paternity case. 

Historically, parenting time has been widely known as visitation. However, various jurisdictions changed the term since the word “visitor” can be limiting, and their parent relationship shouldn’t be reduced to a “visitor” in their lives. 

In some cases, noncustodial parents go through life changes that may require changing their parenting time order. But like any legal proceedings, there are some factors that you need to bear in mind when you want to amend your parenting time order. In cases like this, it’s best to work with a reliable family law attorney to guide you through this legal process.

In this article, we’ll talk about the different factors you need to consider when planning to make changes in your parenting time order. 

Agreement to Change Parenting Time Order

There are some cases when there is a legitimate preference for divorced parents to work together to make decisions associated with their children. If a need for changes in the parenting time order should be considered, the parents should communicate and work out an agreement regarding this situation. 

It’s incredibly time and cost-efficient when parents communicate effectively and reach an agreement regarding the changes to a parenting time order. Besides that, it lowers the level of stress and emotions, not only between them but also with their children.

Once the agreement has been made, the parenting time’s new parameters will be written and submitted to the court for approval. And finally, the judge will confirm that the new parenting time order satisfies the children’s best interest.

Judicial Standard 

When parents want to make changes with the parenting time order of a noncustodial parent, the best interest of a child is the priority when confirming the decision. With that, you should know that the court uses an official legal standard in situations such as this. 

Here are some of the factors that a court considers to know what’s best for the child regarding parenting time:

  • Both parent’s living situations;
  • The physical, mental, and emotional health of the parents;
  • The preference of the child, considering their age and maturity level.

Emergency-related Suspension of Parenting Time

Changes in parenting time do not happen immediately since obtaining approval from the court can take some time. However, if an emergency arises, there is a possibility to get immediate changes in your parenting time, even for just a temporary period.

These alterations would remain until a court can schedule a hearing regarding the emergency change to examine if the change for the existing parenting time order is deemed necessary. 

In cases like this, a court can suspend parenting time until the hearing can be held. And in contrast, a judge can also order parenting time to be supervised, especially under unique circumstances. 

Motion to Amend a Parenting Time Order

When the other party is at odds regarding altering a parenting time order, the parent who wants to make changes can file a motion with the court. Ideally, working with an experienced family law attorney can help guide you through this whole legal process.

Once the motion has been filed, the court will then schedule an oral argument, during which the parents are asked to present evidence and testify. All of these steps are vital to ensure all things are considered for the children’s best interest. 

The Bottom Line: Get Legal Assistance Should You Wish to Make Changes in Your Parenting Time

There are a lot of layers involved when you want to amend your existing parenting time order. In this case, it’s best to speak to a family law attorney regarding your situation so you can come up with the best possible option to help you move forward with the changes. 

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If you’re looking for a family law attorney in Newark, NJ, look no further. Reach out and get a free consultation today!