What is a Material Change of Circumstances in a Custody Case?

Posted on Jul 10, 2013 by Katie Carter

Virginia child custody is determined by what is in the best interests of the child. There are times when circumstances call for changes in a child custody arrangement, if those modifications are deemed to be beneficial.

When a family court judge makes a decision in a Virginia child custody case, the judgment is said to be “final.” That might lead some parents to think that the custody order can never be changed, but this isn’t correct. Child custody can be reviewed and changed when there are material changes in the parents’ circumstances.

“Material changes” refers to any change in circumstances that directly affects the child’s safety, health, well being and development.

For example, if the custodial parent becomes ill and can no longer keep up with the child’s daily needs, or if he or she faces a financial crisis that makes it difficult to provide for the child’s daily necessities, it would constitute material change.

Other things considered material changes in a Virginia child custody arrangement include:

  • child abuse or neglect in the custodial home;
  • violation of the terms and conditions of the custody order;
  • instability of the custodial parent’s home environment; and
  • changes in the parent-child relationship.

The court will review your Virginia child custody case, determine whether there have been material changes, and make a decision based on the facts.

Contacting a Virginia Divorce Attorney

At this vulnerable time, it’s critical you have exceptional legal representation that not only understands the specifics of your case, but is dedicated to your best interests and that of your family.

The Virginia divorce attorneys at Hofheimer Family Law Firm represent Virginia women who wish to file for divorce. We are committed to fighting for your rights, assisting in child custody disputes, and advocating that you receive everything you are entitled to and need in order to start your new life. You can learn more by requesting one of our FREE divorce guides for women, or reserving your seat at our monthly divorce seminar– 757-425-5200.