The separation of children and parents is never easy. Limited quality time and missed milestones can be devastating for all parties involved.
It can sometimes be difficult to adjust to new normals and find a good rhythm that works for everyone. When you have finally gotten into a comfortable routine with visitation, what happens when a relocation is on the horizon?
Can custodial parents relocate?
The quick and simple answer to this question is yes. In situations where one parent has primary custody, it is typically presumed that that parent considered the best interests of the child when contemplating a relocation. Generally, courts will support a move if it will be advantageous for the child.
The near-constant state of flux that most people find themselves in means that circumstantial changes will occur from the time of the original custodial agreement. Job prospects, school districts, access to healthcare facilities, remarriage and proximity to the extended family can all create environments in which moving seems optimal.
Can non-custodial parents stop a relocation?
Yes, but usually only if they can prove that the change would be detrimental to the child. The decision to separate children from one of their parents is difficult, and such prospects should be, and usually are, considered carefully. It is possible that the relocation will not change the current visitation or that making minor changes will allow the schedule to stay the same.
Respectful and open conversation can often solve problems before they start, and solutions are more easily discovered using collaboration.