Moving out of state is overwhelming. It can be made even more difficult when you share custody of your minor child(ren). In many jurisdictions, including California, removing a child from the state without the other parent’s permission can be considered a violation of custody or visitation rights. Generally, both parents have legal rights and responsibilities regarding their child, and decisions about where the child lives or travels often require the agreement of both parents or a court order.
Even if the other parent has not seen the child and is not actively involved in the child’s life, it does not automatically grant you the right to move the child without the other parent’s permission. Courts generally consider the best interests of the child when making decisions regarding where the child should live and with whom.
In situations where a parent has been absent or has not exercised visitation rights for an extended period of time, a court may be more inclined to modify custody arrangements. However, it is crucial to have these decisions ordered by your Judge. Simply moving the child without legal approval can lead to legal consequences, even if the other parent has been absent.
If both parents agree on a change to the custody or visitation arrangement, it is generally a positive development and can simplify the legal process. Here are some general steps to take if you are considering moving out of the state of California:
- Discuss and Reach and Agreement: Ensure that both parents are in agreement about the proposed changes. This might include changes in custody, visitation, scheduled, holiday schedules, or relocation.
- If the parties agree, put the agreement in writing. It’s advisable to document the agreement in writing. It can be a simple document outlining the changes, signed and dated by both parents. It is preferred to have a court order in place prior to moving the child from the state. Be specific about your terms.
- Legal Assistance: While it is not mandatory, it is often wise to consult with a family law attorney to ensure that the agreement is legally sound and covers all necessary details. They can provide guidance on potential issues and help draft a more formal pleading with details your agreement with the other parent.
- File with the Court: Depending on your jurisdiction, you should file the agreement with the court. This involves submitting a stipulation and order for signature by a Judge. The court will review the agreement to ensure it is in the best interests of the child.
- Court Approval: Once the court approves the agreement, it becomes a legally binding court order. It is crucial to follow the court’s procedures and requirements in your jurisdiction.
If you are considering moving your child out of the state of California, please contact the Law Offices of Makupson & Howard for a consultation at (626) 356-0752 or visit our website for additional information. https://www.pasadenafamilylawfirm.com.