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What happens if you object to the relocation of your child?

Let us say that you have been divorced for a couple of years and are adhering to the stipulations of the parenting plan you and your ex established.

Now your former spouse—the custodial parent—wants to move 200 miles away, supposedly to be closer to family, which means your child will be relocated as well. You may have reasons to object to the move. How do you proceed?

Filing and serving

After the other parent serves you with the required Notice of Intended Relocation, you will have 30 days to file your objection with the court and with the party who wishes to relocate. Relocation during this period while the objection is being considered is not permitted unless there is a court order. If you request a court hearing to prevent the relocation of your child, the scheduled date cannot be more than 15 days after your notice of objection has been served.

Special circumstances

If the parent who wishes to relocate the child is going into a domestic violence shelter to avoid a dangerous situation, the notice can be delayed for 21 days. The same applies if the goal of this parent is to avoid a clear and imminent risk to his or her personal health or safety or that of the child. In fact, if it is felt that some of the information in the notice puts the health or safety of the child at risk, a hearing may be requested to waive all or part of the notice requirements.

Going with help

Filing an objection with respect to the possible relocation of your child is probably not something you have done before. However, an attorney experienced with the issues surrounding the matter can tell you that the court will normally provide approval if there are good faith reasons for such a move. On the other hand, your objections to the relocation of your child may be just as compelling, and with legal assistance, you will be able to make a good case.

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