Am I Allowed to Move to a Different State With My Child?
As the United States has become an increasingly mobile country over the last several years, more and more people are moving to different cities and states, often to take advantage of booming job markets and new career opportunities. The virtual dating world also has created more situations in which a participant must move in order for a new romantic relationship to progress. Assuming that you and your child’s other parent share time with your child on a regular basis, what happens if you want to move and take your child with you?
Florida Law and Relocating with a Child
Under Florida law, a parent who wishes to change his or her principal residence to a new residence that is at least 50 miles away must get the permission of the child’s other parent before moving. If parents can agree on the proposed move, then they can just file a written agreement with the court that contains the new parental timesharing schedule as a result of the move. If, however, your child’s other parent does not agree that you and the child should move as proposed, then you will need to get the court’s permission in order to move.
Legal Standard for Allowing Relocation
When parents don’t agree on a proposed move, the court will hold a hearing in order to determine whether the proposed relocation is in the best interests of the child. The court looks to a variety of factors in making this determination, including the following:
- The child’s relationship and involvement with each parent, as well as other family members and significant persons who would be impacted by the move
- The age, physical, emotional, and educational development of the child, and any special needs
- The ability to maintain a relationship and adequate timesharing between the child and the non-relocating parent, and the likelihood of the relocating parent to comply with those arrangements
- The child’s preference, considering the child’s age and maturity
- The financial, emotional, and educational benefits of relocation for the child and his or her quality of life
- The reasons that the parent is seeking relocation
- The current employment and economic circumstances of each parent
- Whether the relocation request is made in good faith and whether the non-relocating parent has met his or her financial obligations, including child and spousal support
- The career and other opportunities available if the relocation occurs
- A history of substance abuse or domestic violence by either parent
Contact Your Florida Timesharing Attorney for Help
No matter what the reasons may be for your move, Florida law does place certain requirements on you that you must follow. As a result, the process of moving your child over the objection of his or her other parent can be difficult. In a truly contested case, an experienced Florida divorce lawyer can be essential to your success in terms of your ability to move. Get the legal representation that you need in this situation. Contact your Fort Lauderdale timesharing attorney today at the office of Vanessa L. Prieto and set up an appointment to talk with us about your family law case.