How a Car Accident Injury May Impact Your Child Custody Agreement

If your child’s other parent was involved in a car accident, the injuries they suffered may be severe enough to impact many areas of their life, including custody of your child. These unexpected circumstances may require some flexibility on your part to work through the aftermath of their car accident. Understanding your legal rights as well as the obligations you share regarding child custody is also important. Whether you or the other parent has primary custody of your child, their car accident may have a significant impact on your daily routine.

Their Injury Is Forcing Them to Stay at Home While Recovering
If their injury is affecting their daily routine, and possibly their mobility, they may be forced to stay at home for an extended period of time while they recover. Depending on the nature of their injuries, they may be able to spend more time or less time with your child. This is also dependent on the age and maturity level of your child. If your child is so young that they must be closely watched at all times, the other parent may not be up to the task at this time. This can be an issue if they are the primary caregiver.

Alternately, if the other parent is unable to go to work because they cannot perform their job, they may be stuck at home but willing and able to spend more time with your child. This could work to mutual advantage if the child normally goes to daycare while you or they are at work. If you both agree to switch your regularly scheduled visitations, it could work to your mutual advantage. There may be monetary savings to you if your child does not have to attend daycare for the time that the other parent is at home recovering.

Petitioning the Family Law Court Judge for Child Custody Modification
It’s not enough to agree with the other parent when it comes to making temporary or permanent child custody modifications to the court-ordered agreement. Though you may both be satisfied with the arrangement you’ve worked out after their car accident, it’s important to obtain official recognition and approval from the court. This can usually be done simply with the help of a family law attorney. By having the Judge’s approval of the child custody modification, whether it is permanent or only temporary, protects you. It eliminates the possibility of the other parent later claiming that you agreed to something you may not have agreed to. And because a child support agreement is legally binding, you do not want the other parent sometime in the future accusing you of doing something that in actuality you both agreed to. It also reduces the possibility of a simple miscommunication because the modified agreement will be in writing.

 By working with your child’s other parent as much as possible, the period following their car accident and injury recovery time may be less stressful than originally anticipated. Having the guidance of a lawyer, like a family lawyer from Pioletti Pioletti & Nichols,  can also go a long way toward coming to a positive resolution.