Child Custody Issues: Parental Relocation

June 15, 2018 Posted in Child Custody

A Dallas child custody attorney can provide assistance with custody issues that arise when a couple separates or divorces. One of the most difficult custody issues that comes up occurs when one parents wishes to relocate with shared children. When this happens, complicated legal questions arise regarding whether the parent who wishes to move can get a custody arrangement modified to take the children out of the area.

Will the Court Change a Custody order if A Parent Needs to Relocate?

If one parent wishes to relocate with shared children, the likelihood of an existing custody arrangement being modified is going to depend upon the specific circumstances.

In some cases, parents are able to agree that the move is a good thing for the kids and will work out a new custody arrangement on their own. If this happens, the parents can petition together to change their legal agreement and a modification should be made.

However, in many circumstances, this is not what occurs. Instead, it is common for one parent to want to relocate with children and for the other parent to object to modifying an existing custody arrangement in order to make this possible.

If one parent wants to move and the other parent objects, the parent who wants to move would need to petition the court and ask for a custody order to be changed. Courts will sometimes modify a custody order, even over the objections of the other parent, when there is a material change in circumstances, and the parent who wants to relocate would need to argue that a material change in circumstance has occurred that justifies a modification.

The court will not automatically grant a request for a custody order to be changed, though. The court will consider a number of different factors in order to determine what is in the best interests of the children. The court will consider issues like the impact of the move on the child's ability to continue building a relationship with both parents; on the ability of the parents to provide a stable home life and ongoing support for children; and on the children's continued connection to extended family and community.

If the court believes that it is in the child's best interest to modify custody so that a parent can relocate, the court will change the existing custody arrangement. Typically, efforts will be made to ensure that the other parent still has ample time with the child, including frequent visits and regular telephone contact.

If you need to relocate with your children or if you are concerned that your ex is trying to move out of the area with your kids, it is important to contact a Dallas child custody attorney for help as soon as possible. An attorney can provide assistance in fighting for your preferred outcome when it comes to custody modification so you can protect your relationship with your kids.  Call today to find out more about how a lawyer can help you.