It is the unfortunate reality that not all marriages last forever. When couples divorce, they move on with their futures separately. In doing so, they are sometimes presented with new opportunities that require them to move. This may be for a job offer or a family matter. While this can be exciting for an individual, it can also be complicated if they share a child in their previous marriage.
When a parent wants to relocate, they generally want their child to come with them. However, if their former spouse disagrees, this can present difficulties. In many cases, the other parent opposes relocation because they want their child to be close to them as well. When this happens, the parents may be required to settle the issue with the assistance of the court.
When parents go through a divorce, they must determine custody arrangements for their children. During this time, a parent can obtain physical custody and legal custody. It is important to know while both of these cover different aspects of a child’s life, neither one is necessarily more important than the other. When a parent has physical custody of their child, they are the individual with whom the child lives and spends the majority of their time. However, the child does spend time in the home of the non-custodial parent as well.
When a parent has legal custody of their child, they are given the right to have an influence on the child’s life. This is done by being part of making important decisions regarding the child’s upbringing. With this custody, the parent can have a say in matters such as healthcare, education, religion, and even relocation. Even if a parent does not have physical custody, they should fight for legal custody. This allows them to fight for their child to stay in the event that their custodial parent wants to relocate with them.
Sometimes, parents are able to settle relocation issues amongst themselves. In other cases, former spouses may need the help of a judge to reach the decision for them. In doing so, the court requires the moving parent to convince the court that relocating would be in the best interest of the child. At this time, the opposing parent can also express their disagreement to the court.
When reaching a conclusion, the judge considers many factors relating to the child to decide what would be best for them. This can include:
The court may also consider several factors regarding the parents. This can include:
Leslye M. Schlesinger serves Rockland and Westchester County with compassion and integrity. With over 30 years of experience guiding clients through matrimony law, she now focuses on helping clients avoid litigation through alternative dispute resolution, including collaborative divorce and mediation. If you need an effective and committed attorney, contact Leslye M. Schlesinger for a consultation.