Sharing custody is never easy. You go from living with your children all the time to only seeing them half of the time, maybe less. If your ex has primary custody of your children after a divorce or break up in North Dakota, you might feel like the separation damages your bond with the children. You may also notice the changes having a negative effect on your children’s school performance or mental health.
Especially if your circumstances are better now than they were at the time of your original custody proceedings, it may be time for you to think about a modification. In some scenarios, a parent unhappy with their allocation of parenting time can go back to family court and ask for a modification.
How does the modification process work?
There are several steps involved in a North Dakota child custody modification. After you submit paperwork to the family courts, your ex will have an opportunity to respond. If they agree that you deserve more parenting time, then you can cooperate for an uncontested modification.
A judge will review the circumstances and then make changes to your custody order, as long as they agree that those updates will be in the best interests of the children. A more balanced split of parenting time that helps renew your bond with the kids would likely be in their best interests, especially if your time with something now is quite limited.
If your ex does not agree that you should have more time with the children, then you will have a contested modification hearing. You will need to demonstrate that you have grounds for asking for more parenting time and that the changes would be beneficial for the children. Your ex may try to prove to the courts that keeping things exactly the same would be a better option.
Modifications can be a complex process
North Dakota custody modification rules are somewhat unique, which makes modification hearings particularly complex family law matters. Although the law does not prohibit you from filing a motion for modification on your own, you will have a better chance of meeting the necessary legal standard and developing a successful case for the modification if you have adequate legal support for this sometimes challenging process.