Your divorce is finally over and you’ve started to think about the future. And what says “fresh start” more than a move to a new state? Unfortunately, moving after a divorce isn’t always as easy as it would have been pre-marriage, especially if you have kids. In this post, we’ll break down the rules and laws around moving to a new state during or after a divorce.
Let’s dive in.
Moving Without Children: What to Expect During and After Your Divorce
During a divorce, it’s common for one spouse to keep the family home and one to move out. If you’re the spouse that’s moving (and you move within the jurisdiction of the county court) you shouldn’t have any problems.
During a divorce, a minor change of address (across the city, for example) typically doesn’t impact the facts of your case. Just be sure to update your address so you don’t miss any important divorce-related paperwork.
If you’re thinking about moving to a new state, though, it may complicate things. Here’s why:
Say you file for divorce in County A. During the process, you move to County H. Even if your address changes, you can’t expect that the case will move with you. Instead, the case stays in the court where you initially filed it.
With this in mind, postpone any big moves until after the divorce is finalized. If you can’t delay the move (due to a job or other extenuating circumstances), discuss it with your attorney. You may be able to make the move, even if you’re required to come back to the original county every time there’s a court hearing.
Moving With Children
Moving with children is a completely different situation. For kids, even that “minor,” across-city move can spell major upheaval. It means a new school district, a disruption of their daily routines, and all sorts of uncertainty kids aren’t equipped to deal with during a divorce. With that in mind, reconsidering a move is usually in the best interests of the children.
Additionally, moving to a new state during or after a divorce (especially if your ex-spouse objects) will generally require a court order at worst, and a reworking of your visitation and time-sharing agreement at best.
Before you consider a big move with the kids, talk it over with a divorce attorney. If you have sole custody of the kids, you may be able to petition the court for a “move away order,” which requires the noncustodial parent to sacrifice their access to the kids. This option isn’t available or ideal in every parenting situation, though.
If you have joint custody, a move will likely require the input and agreement of your co-parent. An attorney can help you work out the details and make sure you’re not inadvertently complicating the case.
Seek Advice From an Attorney in Pensacola, Florida
If you’re considering a move, MGM Law can help you figure out whether it’s the right choice right now or not. Our skilled team of family attorneys will help you protect your interests and keep your life moving forward, despite your divorce. Contact us today to learn more.