Whether you experienced an easy divorce process in which you and your ex were both civil and worked together in the best interest of your kids or not, the end of a child custody agreement is a happy moment. Even if you didn’t get exactly what you want, knowing what rights you have to your kids and knowing that you are the primary caregiver for them is a lovely feeling. They get to spend the bulk of their time living with you, and they get to see their other parent at least according to the custody agreement or more often if you have a civil kind of relationship.
It’s finally over, and you can finally move on with your life. Except you cannot finally move on with your life quite the way you imagined. You are now indebted to the courts, and you are not permitted to make certain life decisions from this point out until you speak with the court, the other parent of your child or children, and even an attorney. You must abide by the laws in your custody agreement or you might find yourself in jail.
Relocation and Child Custody
Now that you’re officially divorced and the kids are with you most of the time, you might decide it’s time to make some life changes. Perhaps you want to live closer to your own family out of New York. Maybe you’re getting remarried to a man who just accepted a new job across the country, or maybe you just accepted a new job in a new state. It’s for the best, and you’re ready to move.
If you take those kids more than 100 miles from your current address, your children’s father can call the police and report the kids kidnapped. You’re arrested and sent to jail, and you face losing your kids and the custody you have. You agreed in your custody paperwork to keep the kids within 100 miles of where you live now because it is close to their other parent.
Call an Attorney
You want to move, but you need permission. You don’t need permission from your ex, but you do need permission from the court. The court needs to know that this is the best decision for the kids and that their best interest has already been considered first and foremost when deciding to move. Are you going to make more money at a better job? Are you moving to a better location in which to raise kids? Is this because you are making positive life changes?
Your ex-spouse cannot stop you from moving, but he can make your life miserable if you don’t go about it using the proper channels. Even if you ask him first and he agrees, what happens the moment he realizes how much he misses seeing the kids whenever he wants or you upset him in some way? If he calls the law, you could go to jail for kidnapping your own kids per the restrictions in your custody agreement.
An attorney is the best person to help with this situation. An attorney can help you present the best possible case to the court. Your attorney can help you modify your custody agreement so you’re both happy when you relocated, and he or she is there to answer any questions you might have throughout this process. There is a lot more to relocation when you have kids and a custody agreement. Don’t let the law pass you without stopping to make sure you’re handling it correctly.