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What to know about relocating after a divorce

On Behalf of | Jan 14, 2024 | Divorce

You may be allowed to move from Tennessee to another state with your child after a divorce. However, a judge will only allow you to do so if it is in the best interest of the child. For instance, the move may be permitted if you are relocating for a higher paying job or to allow your child to be closer to extended family members.

Other factors a judge might consider

A judge might still object to your decision to take your child out of state even if you are moving for a better job or to be closer to family. For instance, if your job requires you to be at the office 12 hours a day, it may prevent you from taking adequate care of your son or daughter. If you move closer to family members who have a history of abuse or neglect, it could put your child in danger, which would likely put a wrench in your plans.

If you share custody

In the event that you share custody with your child’s other parent, that parent may need to consent to the move. At a minimum, alterations would need to be made to an existing child custody plan to ensure that the other parent had adequate access to the child. If reasonable accommodations cannot be made, you might have to choose between staying put and relocating by yourself.

Don’t ignore a judge’s decision

You could face a number of consequences if you decide to move without a judge’s blessing. For instance, you could lose custodial or other parental rights on a temporary or permanent basis. You might also face contempt or other charges that could carry financial or other penalties if convicted.

Although moving may seem worthwhile for you, it doesn’t mean that the law will see it as a positive for your child as well. It may be possible to use statements from family members or comments that an older child might make in an effort to convince a judge to let you relocate with your son or daughter.