Relocation is one of the trickiest aspects of divorces. Trying to take your children to live out-of-state after divorce can put a strain on co-parenting opportunities and the other parent’s relationship with the children. Because of this, they are difficult cases to win.
My relocation cases are some of the toughest that I have ever worked with. I’ve handled a few of them and I’ve been successful at them, but they are tough cases. I was able to win some of these cases because the non-relocating parent was so uninvolved in the child’s life that the court found that it was in the child’s best interest to move. But if the non-relocating parent is actively in the child or children’s life, it can be very hard to get relocation approved. Check out the rest of this page for more information on relocation during or after divorce.
Why Relocation is So Difficult
Relocation situations arise after a divorce when one person wants to move out-of-state. Maybe that person has been offered a great job, or they want to be closer to their family, or they just need a change of pace. If the couple does not have children, relocation is usually no problem. The parties are living their separate lives and there are not really grounds for the other ex-spouse to oppose.
However, if the couple had children, this can make relocating very difficult. To pick up the child and move across the country or somewhere where the parent who’s not relocating is not going to be able to see the child regularly is a very tough ask for a court. That situation is very hard to win. This is because the court recognizes the importance of both parents in children’s lives. In addition, if the parents have joint legal and physical custody, moving far away will really complicate that agreement.
When Relocation is Possible
But if the non-relocating parent has infrequent access to the child, maybe had a drug problem, was in and out of the child’s life, things like that, it might be easier for the court to approve the move. This might especially be the case if the relocating parent is going to get a new job and give the child new opportunities.
But if it’s a normal family situation that’s not impaired in those kinds of ways and there’s regular, frequent contact by the non-relocating parent, it’s very much an uphill battle for a court to approve relocation.
Have you found yourself in a relocation situation? Because these are such tough cases, it is a good idea to consult with an attorney before doing anything else. For more information, contact my office. I am happy to help!