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Child Relocation after Divorce

Child Relocation cases are perhaps the most difficult matter the divorce and family law courts must consider. Usually, both parents present reasonable and compelling positions with respect to whether the child or children should remain with them. In a relocation or move-away matter, one or the other parent will be extremely satisfied while the other parent will be very dissatisfied with the outcome. This office can help the moving or staying parent increase the likelihood that they will prevail at trial on this issue.

Arizona has a statue outlining the factors that the divorce or family court should consider in a relocation matter. Among those factors are the wishes of the parent or parents as to custody, the wishes of the child/children as to their custodian, other relationships that may affect the child’s best interest, which parent is more likely to permit frequent and meaningful visitation with the other parent and the child’s/children’s present adjustment to the home, school and community. There are other factors the court may consider, but the above are the primary considerations the divorce and family law courts generally utilize.

Other statutory factors may also enter into the divorce or family law court’s decision. Those factors include whether the request for relocation is made in good faith, the potential advantage, if any, to the child in moving, whether there is any financial component to the requested move and the effect of the move on the child’s stability.

In addition to the divorce and family law court’s consideration, prior to any proposed move the person seeking to move must fulfill certain requirements to notify the other parent. These requirements vary depending upon the type of child custody involved. Interpreting these rules can be difficult for anyone. You should contact this office well in advance of any possible move. That way, this office can assist you in either defending against the move or facilitating the move itself depending upon the client’s position.

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