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Can you prevent a parent from moving out of state?

| Jan 13, 2021 | Child Custody |

One of the many reasons couples tend to get a divorce is simply not wanting the same life. No matter the issue, it is often the child who gets caught in between. On many occasions, arguments regarding the child will extend beyond the case. One of the most common situations is having one parent wanting to move away from their current location. However, states such as New Jersey will often include certain travel restrictions within the agreed-upon child custody agreement. So, what can you do to prevent your former spouse from relocating with your child? Here are some of the most effective options at your disposal.

In the best interest of the child

Every custody agreement focuses on serving the child’s best interest. For example, a judge may rule that one parent should have sole custody of a child as they are able to provide them with a better life. A judge may bring up this reasoning again if your child will possibly relocate. You may be able to stop the move by proving to the court that it will not be in the child’s best interest to relocate.

Proving your case to the court

If you’re already in touch with a family law attorney, they will usually instruct you to demonstrate to the court all the ways the potential move will impact your child. You may tell the court that:

  • The relocation is not necessary.
  • The child’s education will suffer.
  • The move may place unnecessary stress on your child.

Guardian ad litem

If your child is deemed mature enough, a judge will appoint a guardian ad litem to the case. Their job is to speak with the child and obtain information regarding the move. They will either say that they don’t want to move or that they are indifferent about it. Either way, it can greatly affect the direction the court chooses to go with your request.

Fighting a custodial parent from moving away with your child can be difficult, especially if the change will make the child’s life better. Therefore, it is important to consult with an attorney throughout the process.