Should a mother be allowed to relocate?
Should a Mother Be Allowed to Relocate with the Children against the Active Father’s Wishes?
If a mother wants to move out of state where the kids reside and the active father disagrees, should she still be able to take the kids and move? Why or why not?
Hi, my name is Brian L. Jackson. I’m a Tulsa father’s rights attorney here with dads.law and I’m here today to answer another question from the group. This one has to do with relocation.
So, in the situation where a custodial parent wishes to relocate with children or even a non-custodial parent if they have visitational rights, first of all, there is a question of the distance being moved. But I mean, usually an out-of-state move would trigger the relocation statute.
Now, what that basically is, is if one parent wants to move more than 75 miles away, they’re required to serve written notice on the other parent and the other parent will then have 20 days or excuse me, 30 days in which they may file an objection. If they should choose to file an objection, then it is generally speaking, treated as a motion to modify. And you go to court, the court will make a decision on whether the relocation is going to occur or not.
How Does the Court Decide?
The specific way the court makes this decision is, the first step is that the court will look to the parent that’s proposing the relocation to ascertain if it’s being proposed in good faith. And it’s the parent who wants to relocate’s burden to prove that they’re doing this for a good faith reason. Good faith reasons would be like, for example, a better job opportunity or well, I can move closer to family and there are better resources there. Things like that are good faith reasons. However, if they’re moving for less genuine reasons, such as the flavor of the month or to make it more difficult for you to see your children, that’s not considered a good faith reason.
Assuming mom can meet that first burden, then the burden of evidence shifts to you to show that the proposed relocation is not in the best interest of your children. So the short answer is, it’s fact dependent specifically on your case, whether a court would say she can relocate or not. It will really just depend on what the court thinks about her reasons for relocating and whether or not it’s in good faith and whether or not such a move would serve the best interest of your children.
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Sounds like in this situation, you probably need to get a good lawyer right away because there are time limits to object. If you don’t object, she can relocate without having to go to court. One place you can find a good lawyer is at dads.law where fathers are not disposable.