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Legal Information

After a Decision is Issued

Updated: September 21, 2021

What is a Motion to Amend or Motion to Modify?

Instead of appealing, in some cases, you may be able to request a change (modification) of the court order by filing a Motion to Amend or Motion to Modify. To request a modification of a court order, you will likely need to show that there has been a substantial change in circumstances that has happened since the order was issued. You will need to go back to the court where your order was issued and file modification forms. There will probably be a new hearing on the issue. You may also want to consult with an attorney to see if filing for a modification is appropriate under the circumstances of your case. If you are trying to modify a custody order, you can see general information about modifying a custody order at Changing a final custody order, or find state-specific information by selecting your state from the dropdown menu at same link.

What is a Motion for Reconsideration?

After trial, there are several types of motions that can be filed to address possible trial errors. You may want to consult with an attorney to see if any of these options may work better in your situation than filing an appeal. Depending on the type of motion, there are often short filing deadlines for these motions. The most common type of post-trial motion is a Motion for Reconsideration in which you are asking the judge to reconsider his/her ruling and change one specific part of the court order or the court’s overall ruling. Depending on your state’s laws, a Motion for Reconsideration may be an option in the following situations:

  • when you believe the judge did not consider or properly examine certain evidence or correctly apply the law; or
  • when new evidence is available that you were not able to present before the judge made a decision.

One way that a Motion for Reconsideration may have a negative effect, however, is that if the judge rules against you, s/he may use it as an opportunity to make the ruling harder to appeal by strengthening his/her factual findings or legal analysis against your position. For more information, see our Motions for Reconsideration section.