Children switching schools or daycares may seem like a simple lifestyle change. However, it involves several aspects that may require modifying an existing custody order for parents sharing custody or maintaining a visitation schedule.
Factors to consider
A change in your child’s daycare may require an alteration of the current custody order because of certain factors, including the following:
- Decision-making authority: Before you decide on daycare changes, you must review the current custody order or agreement to ensure you are following its provisions. Depending on the order’s terms on decision-making, your situation may require mutual consent for changes in childcare providers. Otherwise, you may have to apply for a modification with the court.
- Location and convenience: When your child changes daycares, it is important to consider the proximity of the new daycare to both parents’ homes and workplaces, as well as the impact on the existing visitation schedule or transportation arrangements. If the change substantially affects these aspects of the custody order, then a modification may be required.
- Adjustment period: A change in daycare is a change in environment for your child. You would have to consider the adjustment period and monitor how the change affects your child’s behavior and emotional state. Since this change can affect your child’s well-being, the court may require a review of whether it is in the child’s best interests, given the needed adjustment period.
Ultimately, your child’s best interests are the top priority when making these decisions. You should evaluate how the daycare change will affect your child’s well-being, including emotional stability, social continuity and attachment to current caregivers and peers.
Ensuring a smooth modification process
Whenever you face material lifestyle changes that affect your child, it is best to approach each situation with care and due diligence. While it does not guarantee a perfect modification process, collaborating amicably with the other parent and seeking professional legal advice can help ensure that any transition aligns with your custody agreement and serves the best interest of your child.