Considering A Visitation Modification? Find Out If You're A Good Candidate For A Status Quo Custody Plan

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It can be heartbreaking to watch your child sit by the window during scheduled visitations, waiting hopefully for a parent that never arrives. Situations like this also make it difficult to arrange childcare, enroll your child in sports, and schedule family vacations. If your ex frequently skips scheduled visitations, consider requesting a status quo custody plan. Review the information below to determine if you might be a good candidate for a status quo custody plan.

You and Your Ex Have an Established Custody Plan 

It's difficult, though not impossible, to track inconsistent visitation if you don't have a current custody plan in place. When you file a child custody modification with the help of a family law attorney, you must provide evidence-based reasons why a visitation change is in the best interest of your child. You can argue that your ex's inconsistent visits negatively impact your child's emotional well-being and explain that it is difficult to schedule or attend important functions. This helps the judge understand why a status quo custody plan is ideal for your child.

You Keep Detailed Records of Pickups and Dropoffs

Court requires extensive preparation, which is why many people work with a family lawyer to get things done. You must keep consistent, accurate records of missed visitations if you want to request a status quo custody plan. After all, it's difficult for the judge to assess the status quo if you haven't established a pattern of when your ex usually arrives.

For example, if your ex is supposed to pick up your child every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday but only arrives on Saturdays, you can request a status quo custody plan that eliminates weekday visitations. If your ex is supposed to keep your child overnight a few times a week but brings the child home at 7 p.m., you can ask the judge to approve a custody plan that reflects this.

You Don't Want to Completely Revoke the Noncustodial Parent's Rights

If you want sole physical custody, a status quo custody plan is not ideal for you. A status quo custody plan keeps things the same; it doesn't remove your ex from your child's life. When you request this type of custody plan, you aren't taking away visitations that your ex uses. You are only removing the visitations that he or she skips so you can provide a consistent schedule for your child.

Even if you meet the criteria above, you might be unsure whether a status quo custody plan is a practical option for you. Discuss your concerns with a family law attorney so you can determine how to create a custody plan that benefits you and your child.