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Could a parent legally relocate with their child?

On Behalf of | Nov 23, 2023 | Child Custody |

Relocating with a child involves more than just changing residences. In Florida, relocation is defined as a change in the primary residence of a parent or a person to a new location at least 50 miles away, lasting for a minimum of 60 consecutive days. This move could be within Florida or to another state. When a parent wishes to make such a significant move with their child, they must meet specific legal requirements.

The necessity of seeking permission before relocating

In Florida, it is possible for a parent to move a child out of state without a time-sharing order. However, for a relocation to be legally compliant, both parties involved need to sign a written agreement. If the minority time-sharing parent does not agree or consent to the move, the parent planning the move must adhere to a specific legal procedure. This procedure, as dictated by Florida law, involves filing a petition to relocate with a child. This petition initiates the legal process for seeking court approval to relocate with the child.

A judge could deny the move

The parent planning to relocate is responsible for presenting evidence showing the relocation is in the child’s best interests. A judge may be more inclined to approve the move if it is within a reasonable distance, allowing the minority time-sharing parent to maintain their relationship with the child. Conversely, if the proposed location is far away and complicates the other parent’s ability to sustain their relationship with the child, the judge may lean toward denying the request.

It is important to remember that the court’s primary consideration is the child’s best interests. If the judge determines the move could enhance the child’s well-being, they may grant the request. However, if the relocation does not support the child’s best interests, the judge could deny the move.