Factors and limitations with child relocation issues

As life changes, a custodial parent in New York might wish to relocate with their child. However, they cannot simply pick up and move, as a move outside a certain geographical area can become a complex child custody issue. The court will have to approve the move, particularly if the parents disagree about the relocation.

Make sure you are acting in good faith

People have many reasons to move. However, when children are involved, the reasons should show good faith. Moving simply to be far away from the other parent, for example, is not a good one. However, moving for a better job that will improve both your and your child’s quality of life or moving to be close to family who can provide child care can both be seen as good-faith reasons by the court.

Getting the relocation approved

When a parent asks the court for permission to relocate, they must convince the court that they are acting in the best interests of the child. When making this decision, the court will evaluate several factors, including:

  • Each parent’s relationship with their child
  • How the move will affect the time the child spends with the non-custodial parent
  • How the child’s quality of life will be affected by the move
  • The reasons why the parent is seeking relocation
  • The possibility of the parents agreeing to a new visitation schedule

Limitations that can affect relocation

For some parents, the relocation itself might not be approved, even if the reasons are valid. If their parenting agreement with the non-custodial parent does not allow moving outside of a certain local area, the parent might have to petition the court to approve it.

If you are thinking of relocating, it might be a good idea to start by speaking to the non-custodial parent. Even if you both agree to a new visitation schedule, have the court approve the changes.