3 Questions When Your Former Spouse With Child Custody Decides To Move

Posted on: 5 June 2020

Going through a divorce can be quite difficult as it is, but it will become much more complicated if your former spouse moves when they have child custody. Here are some common questions you'll have about this unique situation.

Do You Have Grounds For Custody Modification?

It is important to become familiar with the rules in your state regarding what happens if your former spouse decides to move. It is possible that this gives you the right to have the custody agreement modified if the child were to leave the state. This can allow a judge to decide on a new agreement where you can still see your child or potentially see your child more as a result of the move. If they are moving within the state but farther away from you, you may not have an automatic right to custody modification. For example, if you are able to stay in the same state and have your child go to the same school system, you have a good justification for keeping the child with you because it will cause the least amount of disruption in the child's life.

How Does Enforcement Work With The Child In A Different State?

One thing to be aware of is what custody laws apply in the state the child is in. This can have a big impact on custody laws regarding child support, depending on the state. For example, one state may require child support until the child is 18, while another has child support to the age of 21. This can give you an opportunity to seek to modify the custody agreement and make adjustments if you'd like to be subjected to different enforcement laws based on the new state your child is in.

Can You Stop Your Former Spouse From Moving?

Some custody orders specifically state that the parent with custody must get approval from their former spouse to leave a state or jurisdiction. Custody orders can also require notification within a specific time frame, which will allow the other parent to take action to modify the custody agreement. Unfortunately, there may not be anything that you can do to stop your former spouse from moving if there is nothing in the custody agreement to prevent it. 

To learn more about what laws apply, when you can seek a modification of the custody agreement and more, contact a divorce lawyer near you.