Relocation (moving away) with child/children

Relocation (moving away) with child/children

Very often overlooked but very important part of Florida family law is the requirement that a parent seek permission of the other parent or the court in order to change his or her residence. Upon the divorce or separation from the parent of your children, you are stuck within a 50 miles radius of your current residence, must seek permission to relocate.

What is the definition of relocation?

It is a common misconception that only the parent that has the child/children majority of the time must ask the permission of the other parent or the court prior to the relocation. The law is clear that either parent prior to the relocation must ask the other parent or the court for permission. This requirement kicks in when a parent wants to move beyond 50 miles from his or her principle residence. Such move must be for at least 60 consecutive days; temporary absences for vacation and education do not count. The court counts 50 miles “as the crow flies,” meaning a straight line from your principle residence to your intended principle residence.

When should I ask for permission to relocate?

It is crucial that the parent that wants to relocate seek permission prior to relocation, especially if they are relocating with the minor children. Relocating with the minor children without obtaining written permission of the other parent or the court can have adverse consequence on your case and the court can issue an order for you and the children to return. An experienced relocation attorney can discuss your options regarding the likelihood of success of obtaining a favorable ruling and prepare the necessary documents to file with the court.

How does the court decide whether to grant my relocation request?

Every decision regarding the children is based on the “best interest” standard. The parent requesting relocation and the parent opposing relocation will need to present evidence to the court as to why this relocation will or will not be in the best interest of the children. If you are the parent with whom the child spends majority of the time, you will also be asking not only that the court allow you to relocate but also that the child will relocate with you. If the court previously established a parenting plan, such parenting plan will need to be modified. The court looks at factors like: the nature of the relationship with the parent that is not relocating, the impact relocation will have on the child, child’s preference, and the reason for relocation.

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To schedule a consultation to discuss your relocation case, contact us at (305)-520-9205 or fill out an online contact form.

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