If I have full physical custody and shared legal custody of my children, how do I get full legal custody as well?

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If I have full physical custody and shared legal custody of my children, how do I get full legal custody as well?

I want to hire a lawyer to see if I can change that to full physical and legal custody leaving only visitation and child support for my ex-husband. Before doing so, I was wondering if that’s even possible or heard of?

Asked on January 2, 2013 under Family Law, Pennsylvania

Answers:

S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

You can file an Order to Show Cause (court form) requesting a modification of custody and a supporting declaration stating the facts supporting your request for a modification of custody.  File these documents along with a proof of service with the court and serve your ex by mail with a copy of these documents. 

When you file an Order to Show Cause with the court, the court will schedule a hearing on your request for modification of custody.  Since you already have physical custody and shared legal custody, the court might be reluctant to grant you full legal custody; however, the court's decision would be determined by the issues in the case.

Check with the court clerk before filing the above documents to be certain you have filed all of the appropriate documents because the required documents may vary from state to state.

As for the proof of service, you can either use a court form proof of service or you can write your own.  The proof of service verifies the date of mailing your documents to your ex.  If you write your own proof of service, it just says that you are at least eighteen years of age and the attached documents were sent via first class mail unless stated otherwise to ________ (name and address of your ex) on __________ (date). You sign and date at the bottom.  The date you sign should be the same as the date of mailing and the same date you file your documents with the court.


IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although AttorneyPages.com has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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