Maryland Relocation Lawyers
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Raising a child is difficult, and it can be even more complicated after a
divorce. To ensure that each parent is granted time with his or her child after
the divorce is finalized, the court mandates
custody and visitation rights. However, circumstances don’t stay static
after divorce. For example, a change in employment or relationship status
may result in one parent moving away (and possibly wanting to take the
children with him or her).
Because exes are not at the forefront of most people’s minds, even
when they continue to be a part of their children’s lives, they
sometimes don’t consider the consequences of taking a new job or
dating a person out of state. Circumstances like this can complicate the
custodial situation for both parents, particularly if one decides to relocate
somewhere that isn’t easily accessible.
The custodial parent can’t move without informing the noncustodial
parent of the relocation, especially if it affects visitation. The parent
who wishes to move with the child must consult the court to modify custodial
arrangements. A judge will then decide whether the move is in the child’s
best interest. The custodial parent must demonstrate why the court should
change the current custody order.
Factors influencing the court’s decision include:
- Ability of both parents to care for the child effectively
- Desires of both parents
- Opportunities for the child
- Age and health of the child
- Preference of the child, if he or she is of a certain age
- Residence of both parents and opportunity for visitation
- Involvement of significant people in the child’s life
- Influence the relocation will have on the child’s physical, mental,
and educational development
Ultimately, a judge will consider how the move could positively and negatively
affect the child. For example, if most of their extended family is in
the noncustodial parent’s city of residence, and the child spends
several years acquiring a group of friends at the local school, a judge
may decide that relocating to a place with more isolated circumstances
is not in the child’s best interest. Stability is important in child
development, another factor the court will take into account.
If you’re ready to discuss your relocation with the court, contact
us today. We can review your situation and help you build your case. Make
sure you and your child have the best representation possible. Our
Maryland family law attorneys will use our 50 years of collective experience to protect your rights.
If you live in the following counties, our law office can help: Charles,
St. Mary’s, Calvert, Prince George’s, and Anne Arundel.