When a Michigan court finalizes a child custody arrangement, it is generally set unless there are a certain reasons the order needs to change. It should be noted that the court will rarely change the child custody arrangement if it is working well for everyone involved, though there are a specific set of circumstances when a modification may be appropriate.
For example, the court may temporarily change the custody arrangement if a parent believes that the child is in danger. If there is evidence that domestic violence occurs in the other parent's home or that the child does not willingly want to remain in the home, the court may change the custody arrangement. The custody arrangement may also be modified if one parent repeatedly ignores the visitation schedule set in place by the court and the parenting plan.
The child custody arrangement may also change if the custodial parent dies or otherwise becomes unable to care for the child. Finally, the arrangement could change if one parent is relocating to a distant location for work or a new relationship. In this case, the visitation schedule may be reworked so that the child can stay where their school and friends are located but still have contact with the parent that relocated.
When parents separate or get a divorce, they may be required to share the amount of time they get to spend with their child with the other parent. However, if a parent believes that the other parent is putting the child at risk, a family law attorney may help file for an emergency custody hearing. If there is evidence that the other parent is not properly caring for the child or has harmed the child, the attorney may work with the court to change the custody order to keep the child safe.