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West Palm Beach Divorce Attorney > Blog > Family Law > Custody Agreements And Relocating Parents

Custody Agreements And Relocating Parents


There are many reasons why divorced adults want to move. They may want to pursue a career opportunity, have always desired another area of the country, or want to make a fresh start after a relationship ends. But if you are divorced and there is a child custody agreement in place, the move could have a farther reaching impact than you anticipated.

Florida judges work to balance one parent’s need to relocate and the relationship children have with both parents when making a child custody or visitation decision. If the parents are able to agree to the terms of a relocation, that is often best. But there are situations in which one parent wants to move far away and the other parent disagrees with that decision and will legally fight. To determine what is the best course of action given the details of your situation, talk to a West Palm Beach family attorney.

Moving vs. Relocating

When a person moves, they may move within the same town but not a distance that is far enough to impact a custody agreement. For example, if you live in Grandview Heights but are considering a move to Villages of Palm Beach Lakes, the same custody agreement will remain in place, although the driving time between the two homes could be impacted.

But, if you want to move to a place that is 50 miles or more from your current home and plan to stay there for longer than two months, Florida law will deem it a relocation. Obviously, moving to another state would be relocating. This is a far away move that is permanent and not connected to education, vacationing, or a transition that is necessary for healthcare.

When the parents can agree on relocation terms, that can lead to an adjustment in the custody agreement. This needs to be written out and include the following:

  • Statement that both of the parents involved agree to the one parent relocating.
  • Cite how parenting will be shared once the parent moves.
  • Outline how child visitation and the expense of transportation will be handled.

If the parents agree, the signed agreement can be filed with the court and a form hearing is not typically necessary.

When Parents Disagree

Of course, there are times when relocation is not agreed upon by both parents. In these situations the parent who wants to move must file a relocation petition with the court. The petition includes where you wish to relocate, when you plan to move, why you are moving, and what  visitation plan you are proposing.

Do you want to move far away but are unsure what impact that will have on your Florida custody agreement? The knowledgeable family legal team at Bruce S. Rosenwater & Associates have assisted clients through times of transition and are available to answer all of your child custody questions. Share the details of your unique circumstance with a seasoned attorney today so they can inform you on what legal options you have moving forward. To get started, schedule a consultation today.

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