How Moving Can Complicate Your Child Custody Arrangements

divorce attorneysMany divorced individuals are surprised to find just how complicated moving becomes following divorce proceedings. As California law was established to safeguard parent-child relationships and protect the rights of both parents, it accounts for the ramifications that moving can have on a parent-child relationship, and the state has strict guidelines in place. Parents who are looking to move somewhere else along with their child after divorce proceedings need to present their request for relocation to the courts, who can then choose to approve or deny the move.
Part of this is because divorce decrees in California are meant to be permanent and binding. A move from either end can significantly alter circumstances and interfere with established parenting plans/custody arrangements. For example, moving a child across the country could severely impact one parent’s ability to enjoy scheduled visitations with his/her child. If your child is very young, this will further hamper your ability to move as this age is a critical time for the child to bond with both parents, and the courts are not too keen about limiting either parent’s bonding opportunities.
When Are Relocations Approved?
Although petitions to relocate might be an uphill battle at times in California, there are a few ways where a move can be approved by the courts. One mechanism for this is via a modification of the original divorce decree, which is sometimes achieved via negotiation. Provided that everyone is on board, the courts allow spouses to work out a new agreement in matters relating to child custody and visitation.
Divorce decrees can also be successfully modified via mediation, especially in cases where neither party sees eye-to-eye in their child custody matters, but are willing to try and work together to reach a common ground. If mediation is not successful, the last option is litigation, which is time-consuming, expensive, and carries higher risks. In either instance, your first step should be to consult with a qualified family law attorney, as they can guide you towards the best route for your circumstances. Whether you want to pursue an agreement via mediation, or see the case heading towards litigation, an experienced professional can protect your interests during every step of the way.
Speak to a California Family Law Attorney Today
If you are looking to move after your divorce arrangements were set in stone, or if you have any other questions about family law or divorce matters in California, know that you can count on the skilled legal professionals at R&S Law Group, LLP. Call us today to learn more about how we can help.