Chadwick M. Layton, Esq.[i]
Harvey Waddell & Layton, P.A.
RELOCATION AFTER DIVORCE
In some cases, one spouse will relocate after the divorce is finalized to pursue new employment, to be closer to family or for other reasons.
This can be done without any issue where there are no minor children of the marriage. However, if the former spouses have children under the age of 18, a petition for relocation must be filed before a former spouse moves over 50 miles away from the residence they occupied at the time the final judgment of divorce was entered.
The reason for this additional step in cases that involve minor children is to assure that the parenting plan is modified to accommodate the change in location of where one child will be spending regular overnights.
For example, a weekly schedule which provides for time-sharing exchanges for the minor child every Wednesday and Sunday will no longer work if one parent moves from West Palm Beach to Orlando.
Therefore, a written agreement must be drafted and signed by the parents providing a new time-sharing plan for the minor child. The greater distance between the parents will require the parties to be creative to carve out time where ever possible to allow for regular and consistent overnights to occur with both parents.
A relocation greater than 50 miles will present challenges regarding the needs of the minor child and the relationship of each parent with the minor child. Work schedules, school schedules, extracurricular activities and the law should all be considered when addressing this major change.
In most cases, the child support obligation established before the change in the overnight schedule will also need to be updated to reflect the amendment of the overnight schedule for the minor child.
The law firm you choose in divorce should match your goals for divorce.
[i] Chadwick M. Layton is a partner and shareholder at Harvey Waddell & Layton, P.A., located in downtown Lake Worth.
Mr. Layton is also a member of the Florida Bar Family Law Section and the Susan Greenberg Family Law American Inn of Court of the Palm Beaches,
101 North J Street, Lake Worth
Phone (561) 585-4631