Morris County Relocation Lawyer
Wishing to move with your child across state lines or far away from their other parent potentially raises a host of challenges. Such a relocation generally requires the consent of the child’s other parent or a court order, and neither may be readily given in all circumstances.
The help of a Morris County relocation lawyer may be indispensable when seeking court permission to relocate. A family law attorney with experience in relocation matters could advise you on all the legal rights and responsibilities that may be involved with your move.
State Laws Regarding Out-of-State Relocations
A divorced or unmarried New Jersey parent intending to move out of state with a child must show that the move is in the child’s best interest. In 2017, the Supreme Court of New Jersey set out a series of factors for state courts to analyze when handling relocation disputes. These include:
- Whether there is any history of domestic violence among the parents
- The preference of the child if the child is of sufficient age to form an independent decision
- The stability of the child’s home environment if relocation is allowed
- The fitness of both parents to raise the child
- The continuity and quality of the child’s education
- The parents’ employment responsibilities
When considering a substantial relocation, a court must weigh the potential costs and benefits to the child. A Morris County relocation attorney could introduce evidence to support a parent’s wish to relocate out of New Jersey with their child. This can be done by submitting documents, witness testimony, and the testimony of a child psychologist or other expert who believes that the move would serve the child’s best interests.
Intrastate Relocations with a Child
Moving with a child to another part of the same state without the other parent’s consent does not technically require court approval. However, an intrastate move may require modification to a child custody agreement if such a move constitutes a substantial change in circumstances that would run counter to the child’s best interests.
When determining whether a modification is warranted, a court may look at the following factors:
- The reason(s) given for the relocation
- Whether it is reasonably possible for the child’s other parent to relocate as well
- Whether the child can be expected to have access to comparable educational and recreational opportunities
- Whether the parties are able to agree on a visitation schedule that will allow the non-moving parent to maintain a full and continuous relationship with the child
- The effect of an intrastate relocation on extended family relationships
- The child’s preference, if they are old enough
Representation from a relocation lawyer in Morris County could be key to ensuring such modification goes smoothly.
Seek Assistance from a Qualified Morris County Relocation Attorney
When two separated parents share custody of children, any proposed out-of-state or long-distance intrastate move by one parent would likely be contested by the child’s other parent and may lead to judicial intervention. You likely have good reasons for moving with your child, and the courts and your spouse should recognize that.
However, family law courts always rule in the best interest of the child, so it is up to you and your legal counsel to show them that you know what is best for your family. Get in touch with a Morris County relocation lawyer today to have to your case evaluated.