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Relocating with a child post divorce

On Behalf of | Jan 17, 2020 | Uncategorized

When your marriage is ending, you have to take time to plan for your new future — especially if you have children. What will it look like? Following a divorce, many people in this area of California find themselves needing to relocate, but how does relocating work with kids?

Often, joint custody is the plan of choice in California. There are plenty of studies that show the benefits of granting children equitable time with both of their parents. In most cases, it is beneficial to their overall health and well-being. Relocating creates custody challenges, but there are ways to make it work. It is just necessary to get the proper authorization before packing up and moving away with the kids.

Creating a custody plan

Some parents are able to work out custody plans on their own. They should, however, still file these plans with the state so that they are legally documented should any issues arise. When parents cannot come to agreeable terms, they may need to go to court. If this happens, a judge will get to decide how custody time will be split and if relocation serves the best interests of the children. Judges often approve relocation with children for the following reasons:

  • The requesting parent’s need for family support
  • The offering of a better employment opportunity
  • The continuing of one’s education
  • The need to live in a more affordable area

Family courts try to be understanding. However, when relocation requests are made in bad faith, which does happen on occasion, they are not likely to receive approval.

When to seek relocation approval

Parents typically only need to make relocation requests for long-distance moves. If the distance does not make it difficult for parents to transfer children, no official relocation petition is necessary. If, however, you want to move across the state, out of state or even out of the country, don’t pack your bags just yet.

Do what you think is best

If you think relocating with your children post-divorce is the best thing for your family, go ahead and seek the necessary approval to do so. You have to do what is right for you and your circumstances. Just know that your soon-to-be ex does typically get a say in the matter. With the right help in your corner, you can work toward achieving a custody arrangement that best serves your family’s interests.

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Joseph R. Zoucha, Attorney & Counselor at Law
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Redwood City, CA 94063

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