Orange County Post-Divorce Modification Lawyer
Regardless of the words on the caption, divorce, paternity, and other family law orders are never “final.” These orders are based on emotional, financial, and other circumstances which exist at the time. These circumstances change frequently. Most people relocate about once every five years. Most people change jobs even more frequently than that. Even if the changes are slight, get them in writing. Only formal court orders are official. Either spouse can renege on an informal side agreement, even if it’s written, at any time.
The compassionate Orange County post-divorce modification lawyer at The Law Office of Robert Sunshine understands the need for frequent modification. Many of the people on our professional team are living under divorce orders as well. We also understand the need for long lasting, and more importantly, cost effective solutions in this area. So, we work hard to provide these things.
Parenting Time Modifications
Onset or removal of disability is a common basis for parenting time modification. Perhaps Father overcomes an alcohol problem, or perhaps Mother develops one. These situations could justify a timeshare arrangement change or a residential/non-residential designation change. Most disabilities involve limitations like limited visitation time, supervised visitation, or pickup/dropoff restrictions. Most judges are willing to approve massive changes in disability matters.
Move-away modifications are very common as well. Unlike other jurisdictions, the court must technically approve even a short-distance move, like a new house down the block. These relations are almost always in the best interests of the parents. However, they aren’t necessarily in the best interests of the children.
The relocating party must properly frame the request. For example, the new residence might not only be closer to the parent’s job. It might also be in a better neighborhood, or the children might have access to better healthcare.
This strategy also works in reverse, if a parent wishes to block a move. In these cases, the blocking parent must also show that s/he is genuinely interested in the children’s welfare, and not just fighting the move out of spite.
Family Support Obligations usually include child support and spousal support. A court may modify either one if relevant circumstances have significantly, unexpectedly, and at least semi-permanently changed.
Financial circumstances almost always mean income changes. Usually, a significant change is at least a 10 percent change, either up or down. Especially in spousal support matters, the obligor’s retirement is not necessarily an unexpected change. That’s especially true if the obligor retired around the normal retirement age. Furthermore, if the obligor or obligee is self-employed, income peaks and valleys aren’t always permanent. Most judges want to see a pattern that lasts at least six months.
Emotional changes could also alter FSOs. If the overnight visitation division changes more than about 10 percent, a child support modification is probably in order. As for spousal support, the obligee’s remarriage ends alimony payments as a matter of law. A long-term relationship might have the same effect. Some factors to consider include the length of the relationship, cohabitation arrangements, and joint purchases or bank accounts.
Contact a Hard-Working Orange County Family Attorney
Family law matters almost always involve emotional and financial issues. For a confidential consultation with an experienced Orange County post-divorce modification lawyer, contact The Law Office of Robert S. Sunshine, P.C. After-hours, virtual, and home visits are available.