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Unfortunately, your step-son is still legally considered a minor and cannot make the decision as to whom he wishes to live with. Because there is a custody order that states primary custody is with the mother, if you let your step-son stay with you, your husband would actually be in violation of the court order, and the mother could file a motion for contempt of court against him, and he could face sanctions from the court for willfully violating the order.I realize this doesn't leave you with many good options, but it would be unfair of me to tell you less than the truth. Ultimately, either your husband has to find a way to speak to the mother so that she listens and they come to some agreement where custody can be modified by agreement so at least during the school year, your step-son lives with you and can attend school in your school district, or he has to seek modification of the custody order. I would suggest your husband speak with another family lawyer regarding that. While I don't practice in Iowa, and things may be very different there, modifications of custody don't typically take years to be heard and resolved.What makes a modification of custody a less favorable choice is that in the absence of a showing of a substantial change in circumstances and that it is in the best interest of the child, family court judges are many times reluctant to modify an order. To put it another way, "if it's not broken, why fix it" is the viewpoint many judges take.
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