Divorced parents often need to relocate. The law in Florida provides guidelines for parents to gain permission from the court to move with the child that they share with their estranged spouse. Parents most often relocate to be closer to relatives, take a job or act on an educational opportunity, or improve the quality of life for their child.
There are a number of relocation scenarios that might affect parents:
When the parent the child spends much of their time with wants to relocate
A parent with whom a child primarily resides must gain permission from either their former partner or the court to relocate more than 50 miles from the principal place of residence. In order to do this, the parent submits a notice of intent to relocate with the court. In some cases, the other parent may choose to relocate as well, or grant permission for the move based on the best interest of the child. Should the nonrelocating parent object to move, the court would consider the parents’ circumstances and other relevant issues.
When one parent receives notice the other wants to relocate
The court generally desires, provided it is in the best interest of the child, that both parents spend quality time with their children and share parental responsibility. If the parent who wishes to move submits a notice of intent to relocate, the nonrelocating parent can object to the move by filing a motion within 20 days of that notice. The court then decides on the issues of relocation, time-sharing, and how travel expenses for the child to go back and forth between parents are to be shared.
When one parent moves without notifying the other parent
The court is at liberty to issue a child pickup order if one parent moves with the child without notice, shows intent to move without notice or does not comply with court-ordered visitation arrangements.
If you are considering relocation or have received notice that your ex desires to relocate, a family law attorney can work with you to ensure the move does not negatively impact your parenting plan.