If it's relevant, this is in Massachusetts.

I have a situation where there is a custody battle going on and the two parties are under a temporary court order while the case is being processed (extended because of the pandemic)

Under the court order there are specific days laid out for each parent to see their children. If the parents are in agreement, can they alter one of the days to better fit their schedule? Or do they have to follow the court order to the letter until it's resolved.

Thanks for you time.

  • Jurisdiction is ALWAYS relevant. The family law in let's say Somalia is totally different from Massachusetts.
    – Trish
    Commented Oct 4, 2020 at 10:24
  • That depends on if the court order allows that. If it doesn't, both parents could agree to ask the court to modify the order, but otherwise you most likely have to follow the order.
    – Ryan M
    Commented Oct 5, 2020 at 18:42
  • It's useful to ask "what if". What if both parents agreed and never complained about the change, probably no reason a judge would second guess that mutual choice. Judge has a hundred other cases to worry about. But on the other hand, what if both parents agreed, then one complains after some time goes by, but he/she already agreed in writing... that parent is going to look dumb complaining about a change he/she agreed in writing.
    – J. Win.
    Commented Oct 6, 2020 at 8:50

1 Answer 1


It depends on so many things. That's why only a lawyer familiar with your case and the local rules can answer properly. However, it is not unusual that parents cooperate to make small changes out of court, and when that happens it's good to put those agreements in writing in case there is any dispute later.

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