Making Modifications: How to Change Visitation Schedules

sad-childThe lives we lead are forever in motion and constantly changing. At The Law Office of Steven C Benke, we know that certain child custody visitation schedules may have worked in the past, but circumstances have deemed change necessary. How can you pursue this change and who needs to be involved? The board certified attorney at the Law Office of Steven C Benke can help guide you through the process.

Court Petition

The first way that a parent can go about changing a visitation schedule is by petitioning the court. This involves a hearing and presentation of evidence by the petitioning parent as well as a response from the other parent. The court will likely rule in favor of the change if they feel it is in the best interest of the child. Court petitions are particularly beneficial in the event that the parents are having a difficult time coming to an agreement of their own accord.

Outside of Court

Custodial and non-custodial parents are able to submit a written modification outside of court if they are able to come to an agreement on their own. A change outside of court usually involves something minor such as switching the day of the week or the pick-up/drop-off location. The court is apt to grant minor changes, so long as the parents have come to an agreement and the arrangement benefits the child.

However, the court can be hesitant to grant change if they feel it will disrupt the life and routine of the child. The parents must be prepared to show why the change is necessary and why it is the best decision for everyone involved.

Major changes are a bit more difficult to be settled outside of court, but this isn’t to say that they can’t be accomplished. Once again, if the parents are able to come to an agreement, they have the option to submit the changes to court for approval.

If the court approves the proposed changes, they become court order, and the custodial and non-custodial parent must abide by these new rules in the future.

If you have questions about changing your child custody visitation schedule, give The Law Office of Steven C. Benke a call today at (210) 308-0004.

The Importance of Establishing Paternity

pregnancy-testThe word maternity is common in our society but paternity is thrown around far less frequently. What is paternity, and what does it constitute? The majority of us have heard the word paternity in conjunction with the word test. A paternity test is a DNA test that establishes whether a man is the biological father of a child. The maternity of a child is fairly safe to assume, but the paternity of a child allows for much more discrepancy. Basically, paternity establishes the law between a father and his child.

Paternity is important at the Law Office of Steven C Benke because it plays a crucial role in child support and child custody cases. Both parents should play a part in a child’s life, but we can’t require a father to do anything if paternity hasn’t first been established through medical testing. If the parents of a child are unmarried, then the father has no legal obligations until paternity is officially established.

Once paternity has been established, the father is expected to assume responsibility for his child. The circumstances of how the child was conceived are fairly irrelevant. The father is still responsible for his child if paternity has been established. The father and mother are both responsible for the care and financial provision of their offspring. Paternity can be a tricky subject and the Law Office of Steven C Benke are here to guide you in what it means for you and your family and answer any questions.

There are many benefits to establishing paternity:

•    The child is able to enjoy relationships with people on both sides of the family. This could include grandparents, cousins, aunts, and uncles.
•    Both parents can contribute in making decisions that affect their child.
•    Establishing paternity helps the child to feel both loved and secure.
•    Having access to the medical records of both parents can prove beneficial in the future.
•    Both parents can feel involved and important when it comes to their child’s life.

Establishing paternity can be a highly confusing process with many details that need explanation. Call our office at (210) 308-0004 to schedule your free consultation and let the The Law Office of Steven C. Benke help you deal with the complexity of paternity law today.