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Relocating With Your Child Involves Much More Than Packing Your Bags
When you have a child with another person, you are tied to that person indefinitely, whether you are married, unmarried or divorced. All decisions involving where you live — or more importantly, where you move — must be made in light of how those decisions will affect your child and his or her relationship with the other parent.
Greenberg & Krieger LLP offers extensive experience in advising parents in complex child custody and parenting disputes, including move-away cases and related child custody actions. Our child relocation lawyers in Stamford, Connecticut, represent parents in Greenwich, Wilton, Westport and throughout Fairfield County who are seeking to relocate with a child or are objecting to the other parent’s request to relocate with the child.
Can I Relocate Out-of-State With My Child?
Whether the issue of relocation arises prior to a divorce, during divorce or custody action between unmarried parents, or post-judgment, the court’s focus remains on the best interests of the child. When a parent’s decision to relocate arises before or during such legal action, the issue of relocation will be addressed within child custody determinations as a whole. The parent’s choice to relocate may, among many other factors, be considered when the court evaluates what custody arrangement is in the best interests of the child. Post-judgment relocations, however, require prior consent of the non-relocating parent or approval by the court in a separate custody action.
If you wish to relocate out-of-state or if you wish to relocate a significant distance from the other parent (while remaining in Connecticut) — thus impacting an existing parenting plan — you must demonstrate the following to the court:
- That the relocation is for legitimate purposes: Are you moving to start a new job? Do you wish to relocate to be closer to more family? It is important for the court to evaluate whether the reasons for the move stem from a legitimate purpose or simply to deprive the other parent from spending time with the child.
- That the proposed location is reasonable: Is the proposed new home/location sensible, given the reasons for the move?
- That the relocation is in the best interests of the child: Will relocating result in a better paying job, enabling you to provide better opportunities for your child? Will relocating result in a better support unit for the child? Are there better schools and education opportunities at the proposed new location? Will the child still be capable of maintaining a relationship with the non-relocating parent?
Is Relocating In the Best Interests of Your Child?
The need to relocate may arise due to new employment opportunities, education opportunities, social and familial engagement and many other reasons. However, courts look at the entire picture and make a decision of whether or not to approve child relocation based upon the best interests of the child. While courts may assess many other factors, the general issues considered by the court involve:
- What are the parents’ reasons for seeking or opposing relocation?
- What is the quality of relationship between the child and each parent?
- How will relocating impact the quantity and quality of the future contact with the non-relocating parent?
- To what extent will relocating impact the child and relocating parent’s lives economically, emotionally and educationally?
- How feasible is it to preserve the relationship between the child and the non-relocating parent through parenting time/visitation arrangements?
For Experienced Advocacy, Call Our Child Custody Lawyers in Connecticut
Parental and child relocation disputes can be emotional, frustrating and complex. It is important to have an experienced attorney who can help you understand the law and help you achieve a child custody solution that protects your wishes and remains focused on the best interests of your child.
From our offices in Stamford, Connecticut, our family law attorneys represent mothers and fathers in divorce and child custody-related disputes in communities throughout Fairfield County. Call us or contact our family law firm by e-mail for a complimentary initial consultation with an assertive Stamford child relocation attorney.