Legal implications regarding sharing minor children between estranged parents

Attorney Yanique Otto

Scenario:

You have a court order governing timesharing of your children between you and the other parent of your child/children. You’ve recently gotten a better job offer in another city, and you want to move away and you want to take the kids with you.

Here’s what you need to know:

The Florida Relocation Statute is the Florida law which provides guidance to parents regarding the removal of children when they do not have a court order or judgment clearly addressing the relocation of a minor child. This same statute provides serious sanctions to parents who already are under a Court’s order or judgment establishing a time-sharing plan, parental plan, or custody – but the parent relocates the minor child without first following certain legal steps or requirements.

Parents in this situation are not confined to the house that they live in. You’re free to move to another home if you so desire, but there are guidelines. Whenever a parent wants to move away with the kids who are subject to a parenting plan, and the move will be more than 50 miles away from the originally designated primary physical residential home, that parent must either get the consent of the other parent, or approval from the court, by filing what is known as a Petition for Relocation.

I the scenario we presented, the parent who got this attractive job offer and wishes to move more than 50 miles away, needs to consult with the other parent and get their permission, in writing and signed. OR that parent will need to file a Petition for Relocation with the court, and convince the judge that the move is in the best interest of the child.

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