Clearwater Relocation Attorney
Parental Relocation and Time Sharing Issues in Florida
As life changes occur, it may be necessary for parents to relocate to another state or another part of our state with their children. Florida law defines “change of residence address” as the relocation of a child to a home more than 50 miles from his or her home at the time the last custody order was entered (unless the move places that home less then 50 miles from either parent). The move must be for at least 60 consecutive days not including a temporary absence from the regular home for vacation, education or health care services for the child. It is important under the law, however, for both parents to maintain relationships with their children. These two needs can sometimes be at odds and it takes an experienced attorney to understand the law and help meet the best interests of the children in cases of child relocation.
At the Law Offices of Gale H. Moore, P.A., we represent parents in cases of relocation and the modification of child support and custody arrangements in Florida. Family lawyer Gale Moore has more than a decade of experience in family law and has a thorough understanding of the requirements that parents must meet when attempting to relocate with their children. Our Clearwater relocation attorney can also help parents who disagree with relocation to oppose the relocation in court.
Requirements for Parental Relocation
Florida law sets forth the procedures that parents must meet when attempting to relocate with their children. If an agreement is not reached first, the procedure includes filing a petition to relocate on the other parent and every other person entitled to time-sharing with the child. The petition must include specific details about the requested relocation and must include certain statutorily mandated language. The parent who is served has a specific time deadline in which that can reply. If the parent who is served fails to reply within the prescribed time frame then the Court will presume the relocation is in the best interest of the children. The Court can then enter an expedited order allowing the relocation and adopting the new time-sharing and transportation arrangements set forth in the Petition. Moving without complying with the statute’s requirements subjects that party to the Court’s contempt powers.
In disputed relocation cases, it must be proven that the relocation is in the best interests of the children. There is no statutory presumption in favor or against relocation. The age and developmental needs of the children, the pre-existing relationships with non-custodial parents, the reasons for the relocation, the children’s preference, the current employment and economic circumstances of each parent, the history of domestic violence or substance abuse by either parent, the extent to which the non-moving parent has fulfilled his or her financial obligations owed to the other parent, and the costs of visitation are all some of the factors considered by the court when approving or denying relocation notices. Relocation could also affect child support payments and other aspects of the existing orders.
Help That You Need for Your Relocation
If you are planning to relocate, or if you have notified that your former spouse plans to relocate with the children, you should hire a lawyer immediately to make sure that the procedure is completed correctly and that your rights are protected throughout the process.
Contact us at the Law Offices of Gale H. Moore, P.A., in Largo, to learn more information about parental relocation and its requirements in the state of Florida. Call us to schedule an initial consultation at 727-584-2528.