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Can you change your custody schedule if your work changes?

Living separated from your child is difficult, and as a noncustodial parent, it's been a rough adjustment. You want to be there as much as you can be, but the way your custody schedule is set up gives you little time to be present in your child's life.

You used to work 60 to 80 hours a week, so it made sense that your ex-spouse would have primary custody. Today, you work a normal 40-hour week and have time to spend with your child, so you'd like to arrange to make that happen.

Major life changes? You may want to review your custody plan

When you go through major life changes, it may be helpful to go back and review your custody plan. If you have more time for your child and intend to maintain the current work schedule you have, then you may want to ask your ex-spouse if they'd be open to adjusting the schedule to give you more time with your child. If they don't want to change the schedule but you still do, you can seek a modification through the court.

If you have to seek a modification of your custody schedule in court, be prepared to present a strong case. You will need to show how your work schedule changed, why you have more time and why you should disrupt your child's current schedule. You may want to prepare documents for the judge to show that you've taken time to prepare to take on more responsibility and believe that it is in your child's best interests to see you more often.

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