A temporary custody order is often put into place when a divorce, separation or custody lawsuit begins. These are put into place to manage the situation until a more formal, permanent order can be established after a full hearing. These orders are typically only valid until the court issues a permanent order. A temporary custody order can be changed, but it is difficult to do so because the courts view them as only temporary. However, if there is a compelling reason to change the agreement, for example, if a child is unhappy or is not being well-cared for, the judge may change a temporary custody order.