Dissolving a marriage can involve very complex issues, which become even more complicated when children are involved. If half of a divorcing couple in Chicago decides to move to another city or state and also happens to be the custodial parent, it might not be a simple decision.
One important consideration a custodial parent contemplating relocation has to keep in mind is whether emotions are guiding the decision to leave. Because of the possibility that the non-custodial parent could contest the relocation, the custodial parent may have to make sure that moving passes a family court’s standard of what is in the best interest of the child.
Even if the move could afford the custodial parent with a better paying job or an increased support system, that is not the deciding factor for a family court in a contested relocation. There has to be proof that separating the child from the non-custodial parent will only have a minimal impact, which means showing that the move will enhance child’s overall quality of life. If this is not proven, a parent may have to stay in an unfavorable situation in order to preserve the non-custodial parent’s visitation rights. Even if a custodial parent prevails in family court, there is still the possibility of feelings of guilt from putting distance in between the child and the non-custodial parent.
Divorcing parents could end up hashing out matters such as custody and visitation in family court. Talking with a family law attorney may aid in resolving some of these issues, as well as setting up a plan for agreement modification if necessary.
Source: The Huffington Post, “6 Things to Expect and Consider When Relocating with Children After Divorce“, Andrea Moore, December 18, 2013