How Child Custody is Affected When You Move

Posted November 4th, 2014 by .

Categories: Family Law.

child-custody-relocating-out-of-stateIf you are thinking of relocating your child out of state, it is important that you seek legal counsel.  Of course, this is not an issue if you are making the move with your child’s other parent.  However, parents who have visited the court for any type of custody case need to ensure they are making the relocation in accordance with the law.  Obviously, this is a factor in a divorce action.  It may also be one in instances when the parents never married, but sought the court’s intervention concerning child custody.

The law giving permission for a parent to leave the state does consider consent as an option.  Therefore, if your child’s other parent agrees to the move, you may be able to prevent the relocation from becoming a big issue.  Of course, the court may need to intervene concerning visitation agreements.  Who will foot the bill for travel expenses if the move is substantially far?  Does it change the frequency of the visitation schedule?

Children “of suitable age” may also consent to their own removal from the state.  Generally, the law considers children over 14 to have sufficient maturity to determine whether they are in agreement with the prospective move.  There are some factors involved in this.  For example, it should be clear that the child has not agreed to the move under duress.  Additionally, the child’s consent must be an informed decision.

If no consent is given, it is up to a judge to make the decision concerning the parent’s desire to move out of state.  The New Jersey courts consider the best interests of the child first and foremost.  The moving party should be able to demonstrate why relocation will best benefit the child.  There must be evidence of good faith efforts to better the life of the child.  It is also important  to demonstrate that the custodial parent can provide the child with a financially stable household.  ‘

If you are considering a move out-of-state and are a single parent, it is important to seek competent legal advice.  The Law Office of Anthony Carbone has several years of experience handling these types of cases.  Contact us for more information.

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