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When Can a Parent Relocate With a Child After Divorce? 

 Posted on February 23, 2023 in Family Law

Collin County Child Custody LawyerOne of the topics divorcing couples most frequently disagree about is that of child custody. The stakes can feel very high and, because people often get divorced due to  differences in parenting strategies, coming to an agreement about how to manage the children’s schedules can be very difficult. 

This is especially true when a divorce involves a parent who wants to relocate with a child. However, this complex situation can also occur after divorce as well, often leaving both parents wondering what their options are. If this situation sounds familiar to you, read on for an overview of how relocation with a minor child may be permissible for a parent sharing custody, and then contact a Texas child custody lawyer for help with your case. 

Shared Custody and Child Relocation

If parents are getting divorced and one parent wants to move away with a child, that needs to be part of the divorce agreement, which will be approved by a judge. Sometimes, a judge will not approve the separation of a child from his or her other parent, and the parent who wishes to move away will either have to do so without the child or adjust plans. 

Once a divorce has been finalized, a parent wishing to move away will first need to know whether he or she has the authority to do so. For example, a mother with sole conservatorship is the only parent with decision-making authority for a child, in which case she does not need permission from the judge or her child’s other parent to move, no matter how far. But sole conservatorship is relatively rare in Texas; much more frequently, parents share joint managing conservatorship and a parent wishing to move needs to get permission from the child’s other parent. 

An existing parenting plan usually includes an agreement about the geographic area in which a child’s parent can move, but going outside of that area will require permission. If the parent who wants to move asks the child’s other parent and that parent says no, the parent wishing to move will have to petition the court for permission. The judge in the case will examine the best interests of the child and determine whether moving would be beneficial to both the child and the relationship with both of his or her parents. 

If a parent decides to go ahead and move without either parental or court permission, he or she can get in serious trouble with the law, including charges of parental kidnapping and criminal penalties. It is always best to take the proper route when modifying a parenting plan or custody agreement.

Call a McKinney, TX Child Relocation Attorney

Whether you are hoping to move with your child or are hoping to prevent your child’s other parent from moving with your child, having the help of a Collin County, TX child relocation attorney will help your case have the best chance of succeeding. Call The Ramage Law Group at 972-562-9890 to schedule a confidential consultation. 




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