When it comes to divorce, there is nothing more painful than hammering out your child custody arrangements. Chances are neither of you will be living with your children all the time, as you did before your divorce. New living arrangements can be hard on everyone, but If either you or your divorcing spouse will be moving out of state with the divorce, it can make the issue that much more difficult.
Your Child Custody Arrangements
In the State of Texas, one parent is generally the primary custodial parent – the parent with whom the children primarily live – and the other parent has a fairly generous visitation schedule. Further, both parents typically share equally in what is known as legal custody, which refers to taking on the rights and responsibilities of being a parent. These include making important decisions on behalf of the children, including decisions related to their:
- Medical care
- Religious upbringing
- Extracurricular activities
Moving Out of State
The court order finalizing your divorce will generally deem the area in which the primary custodial parent must live with the children – typically within the county (or an adjoining county) of the other parent. If you are the primary custodial parent, however, there are circumstances that may motivate you to move farther afield. These can include:
- Changing jobs
- Pursuing better job opportunities
- Getting a fresh start
- Being closer to a support system made up of family and friends
Whatever your reason, making a significant move after a divorce is not uncommon, but it is necessary to clear that move with the court.
The Court’s Requirements
In order to make your case to the court regarding your move away from your children’s other parent, you will need to convince the judge that the move is reasonable. This usually involves one of the following:
- A written agreement between you and your children’s other parent that you are in mutual agreement regarding the move
- A compelling argument that demonstrates exactly how the move is in the best interests of the children
- A plan of action that ensures that the other parent will be able to maintain a significant role in your shared children’s lives
The court is always motivated by the children’s best interests, and this almost always involves both parents continuing to have an active role in their lives. This means that if you will be moving post-divorce, you will need to build a very effective case for that decision and will need to be proactive in ensuring that your children continue to see their other parent regularly.
If You Plan on Moving Post-Divorce, You Need an Experienced Killeen Family Lawyer
The courts take a firm stance in protecting the relationship between both divorcing parents and their shared children. If you, as the primary custodial parent, plan on moving post-divorce, you need the professional legal counsel of attorney Brett Pritchard at The Law Office of Brett H. Pritchard in Killeen, Texas, on your side. Mr. Pritchard is committed to applying his considerable experience to your unique situation and to helping you find a solution that works for your family. To learn more, please do not hesitate to contact or call us at 254-501-4040 today.