When parents are not together, moving out of state with a child can seriously impact the child’s relationship with the parent who stays in Maryland. Unless the parents agree to the terms, the court will have to weigh in on the benefits and drawbacks of such a move.
The parent wishing to move must have legitimate reasons for pursuing such a course of action. If you are moving out of state or worried that your child’s other parent plans to move out of state, you will need the help of a Maryland relocation lawyer. Discuss your options with an experienced family attorney.
Building the Case for an Out-of-State Move
Courts make custody and visitation terms based on the best interests of the children. Custodial parents who plan to move to a new state with their children will have to demonstrate compelling reasons for the relocation. If the parent received an out-of-state job offer that promises a much better quality of life for a child, courts would take that into account, but it will not be the only factor they consider.
The custodial parent will have the burden to prove that the other parent will still manage to have similar parenting time with the minor child. If the move means that the other parent will rarely see the child, the courts will likely deny the request. Schedules that might work include those that provide the non-custodial parent with the lion’s share of the time during school breaks and summer access.
Other factors that may support such a relocation include proximity to the extended family that will serve as a support system in the child’s life. A Maryland family lawyer can help a parent understand possible strategies for supporting a relocation.
Opposition to a Parent Relocating
A non-custodial parent may find the prospect of their children leaving the state frightening. If the parent is involved in the child’s life, including school, extracurricular activities, and frequent visitation, they will want to highlight the fact that a proposed relocation will rob the child of a significant relationship and time with that parent.
Taking a child out of a school and away from friends and their community is another factor that the parent opposing the move will want the court to consider. Moving a child away from their home might impact their sense of security and stability.
Sometimes moves will also create financial problems. If the parent relocating with the child will live a great distance from Maryland, visits might become particularly costly. It is important for a parent opposing a relocation to find an experienced Maryland family law attorney who can advocate their position.
Relocation and Mandatory Notification
Courts mandate that a custodial parent looking to relocate with a child must notify the other parent and the court at least 90 days before the prospective move. There are exceptions to that rule, including when a parent’s notification could put the parent and child at risk of abuse or if the potential reason for the move was immediate.
The court also recognizes that situations, including economic ones, might necessitate an urgent move. If the parent intending to move faces extenuating circumstances and files a motion with the court as soon as possible once they learn that they need to relocate, this can serve as a defense against actions for violating the terms of the agreement. Regardless of the reason for the move or the timeline, parents should consult with a Maryland family lawyer to ensure that they abide by the necessary laws.
Hiring a Maryland Relocation Lawyer
Moving to a new state is a major life event. Sometimes relocating will offer a much better life for children, but if the move takes the child away from another parent, there may also be severe negative effects.
If you are considering making changes that impact your parenting time and schedule, you will need the help of a Maryland relocation lawyer. Your attorney can help you learn your rights and options when it comes to out-of-state moves.