Relocating with Children After Divorce
At least one parent, if not both, expect to move after a divorce. Typically, that means getting an apartment or smaller home a few neighborhoods away, but some may feel differently and move to another state. In that circumstance, custody lawyers often get involved. Many issues occur when one divorcing parent wants to relocate a considerable distance away and take the children with them, including the following:
- Quality of parenting time. Children do not receive the same experience from a phone call than being in a parent’s presence. A parent who is accustomed to spending time with their children may worry their relationship could be eroded if they cannot be present whenever possible.
- Proximity in emergencies. Living 20 minutes away from a child is still close enough to be available in an emergency or unexpected situation.
- Upheaval in everyday routines. Children thrive on routines. After a divorce, they may not respond well to switching schools, making new friends, and living in a new town.
- Ability to meet custody arrangements. If a spouse decides to move with the children after a custody agreement has already been arranged, the agreement may be impossible to follow. Consequently, the parents would need to re-negotiate a new custody arrangement if one of them moves far away.
Benefits of Relocating Post-Divorce
Relocating with children after a divorce can have positive outcomes. In fact, it can be a suitable decision for several reasons, including:
- Higher quality of life. Often, the choice to move to another city or state is financial. A better job for one of the parents could mean a better lifestyle for the children, as well as new opportunities.
- Removal from toxic circumstances. In some instances, a non-custodial parent might be a negative influence on the children and the divorcing spouse. New Jersey courts have ruled in the past that a relocation may be deemed appropriate if it is in the children’s best interests.
A divorcing parent cannot take the children across state lines without facing serious legal repercussions. Instead, they must pass a relocation analysis test. Additionally, the burden of proof to justify that a move is in the children’s best interest is dependent on the parent who wants to relocate. In fact, a court order, or an ex-spouse’s consent, is necessary for any major move that involves the children. Exceptions include any risk to the wellbeing of the ex-spouse, children, or both.
South Jersey Child Custody Lawyers at the Burnham Law Group, LLC Help Clients with All Types of Custody Matters
Whether you are a divorced parent who wants to move with your child, or your ex-spouse wants to relocate and take the children, consider calling the South Jersey child custody lawyers at the Burnham Law Group, LLC. We can help you understand, protect, and enforce your rights. For a free consultation, call us at 856-751-5505 or complete our online contact form today. Located in Marlton and Somers Point, New Jersey, we serve clients throughout South Jersey, including Camden County, Burlington County, and Atlantic County.