How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Law Educator, Esq. Your Own Question
Law Educator, Esq.
Law Educator, Esq., Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 118684
Experience:  JA Mentor -Attorney Labor/employment, corporate, sports law, admiralty/maritime and civil rights law
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Law Educator, Esq. is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

What does the term "material change in circumstances" mean

This answer was rated:

What does the term "material change in circumstances" mean in Utah as it relates to modifying child custody? Can you provide a few examples other than the common sense things such as drugs/alcohol abuse or a criminal offense.
Thank you for your question. I look forward to working with you to provide you the information you are seeking.

A "substantial or material change" in circumstances is not defined by the courts. The court instead holds it is up to the judge reviewing the facts to determine whether some major change has occurred in circumstances since custody was last awarded. See: Hogge v. Hogge, 649 P.2d 51 (Utah, 1982) . Thus, the court uses the common sense approach when looking at what is material and substantial.

Things like a child growing older and going from pre-k to full time kindergarten or going into high school where time is more demanding in school or a parent having to move to get a job in another location or a parent getting some permanent disease or disability or a parent developing a substance abuse problem or one of the parents losing a home can all be things that would be substantial or material changes that the court can use to change custody.

I truly aim to please you as a customer, but please keep in mind that I do not know what you already know or don't know, or with what you need help, unless you tell me. Please consider that I am answering the question or question that is posed in your posting based upon my reading of your post and sometimes misunderstandings can occur. If I did not answer the question you thought you were asking, please respond with the specific question you wanted answered.

Kindly remember the ONLY WAY experts receive any credit at all for spending time with customers is if you click on OK, GOOD or EXCELLENT SERVICE even though you have made a deposit or are a subscription customer. YOU MUST COMPLETE THE RATING FOR THE EXPERT TO RECEIVE ANY CREDIT, if not the site keeps your money on deposit.

Also remember, sometimes the law does not support what we want it to support, but that is not the fault of the person answering the question, so please be courteous.

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
What are the odds a judge would award sole custody (from a 50/50 arrangement) of three children based on one child acting out due to frequent medication/prescription changes? Note: The other children seem fine - participating in sports and school activities, socializing well with friends and doing well in school.
Thank you for your response. It is not likely that one child acting out would be grounds for them to change custody of all three. There is a possibility the court would change custody of that one child to see if the other parent would have better control over that child and the court can even order that the child be placed in therapy during the change to try to determine the cause of the behavior, which is more important to the court.
Law Educator, Esq. and 3 other Legal Specialists are ready to help you