Want To Relocate With Your Child After Divorce? Here Is What To Know
It is a relief to go through a divorce that involves children and have primary child custody once your case is finalized. Still, that decision is not always final and you may still face certain child custody issues in the future. After all, the only constant in life is change and that may include your personal circumstances. At some point, you may wish to move to another city, or even another state, with your child. State law expressly addresses this issue and there is a very specific procedure you must follow. Below, our Media child custody lawyer explains what that is.
Child Relocation Process in Pennsylvania
You may wish to relocate with your child for a better employment position or simply to be closer to family. Regardless of your reason for moving, you must follow a very specific procedure under Pennsylvania law.
First and foremost, you must provide anyone else with custodial rights notice of the move at least 60 days before you plan to relocate. You must send this notice by certified mail and you must also submit notice to the court. If the other parent or custodial party objects to the move, they have the opportunity to file an affidavit with the court explaining why they object to the relocation. The court will then consider all the factors of a specific case and make a final decision.
Factors a Court will Consider in Relocation Requests
If another custodial party files an affidavit outlining their objections with the court, a hearing date will be set so a judge can hear from all sides. After hearing all arguments, the judge will make a final decision based on the following factors:
- The nature of the relationship the child has with each parent as well as other important family members, such as grandparents,
- The child’s age and how the relocation will impact their ongoing physical, emotional, and mental development,
- The practicality of custody arrangements and whether they can be sustained to maintain a positive relationship between the child and any custodial parties,
- The preference of the child, if the child is of a certain age and maturity,
- The reasons the custodial parent has for requesting a move,
- Any relevant party’s history of child abuse or domestic violence,
- Any evidence that shows one parent tried to interfere in the relationship between the child and either parent or custodial party, and
- Any other factor the judge believes is relevant.
After a judge has considered all of the above factors, they will make a decision. That decision is final and legally binding and both parents must comply with it.
Our Child Custody Lawyer in Media Can Help with Your Relocation Request
If you want to relocate with your child, you will encounter many challenges, particularly if the other custodial party objects. At Barbara Flum Stein & Associates, our Media child custody lawyer can help you overcome those challenges so you have the best chance of success with your case. Call or text us now at 610-565-6100 or chat with us online to request a consultation and to learn more about the process.