Jamie Graham & Associates, PLLC

Texas relocation laws for children after a divorce

It is not uncommon for a person to want or need to make a move. Following a divorce, if you are the custodial parent, you have to ensure that the other parent has access to the child, and there may be court orders that preclude you from moving out of the area. Relocation might be possible, but it greatly depends on your child custody arrangement established in your divorce.

What type of custody agreement do you have?

In Texas, the most popular type of custodial arrangement is joint custody. There is a presumption under the law that in the best interest of the child, it is better for both parents to be involved. Of course, if there is a history of family violence, a lawyer can rebut this presumption. When divorced parents can work together to reach a parenting agreement, it is much better for everyone. If the parents cannot agree, it will be up to the court. Either way, the child is now subject to this agreement.

The court may decide if you can relocate or not

Whether you can relocate with the child will largely depend on your child custody arrangement. If the plan specifies that the child's residence must remain in a particular region or county, you will have to petition the court to modify the order.

If there is no restriction on the child's residence, you still cannot relocate the child as you wish without considering the other parent's wishes. If the non-custodial parent opposes the move, he or she can file a motion with the court to prevent the move from happening until a hearing can be held. If there are extenuating circumstances, such as military orders or another complication, you must still seek court approval.

Obey the law

As you can see, when you are divorced with children, it is not as easy as just deciding to move. Texas family law is quite complex. If you can work out a child custody arrangement with the other parent, you may still need to go to court, but without opposition, the court may easily grant the arrangement.

It is always better to seek advice from an experienced family law attorney who can look at your custody arrangement and your situation for the best outcome for your child. Long-distance visitation arrangements are possible, but such plans have to be carefully crafted to provide contact between the noncustodial parent and child. You need a creative lawyer who is knowledgeable about your options, whether you are the custodial or noncustodial parent.

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At Jamie Graham & Associates, PLLC, we have received a variety of honors and awards for our family law services. Members of our team have been listed as Top Lawyers in San Antonio Scene magazine. We take pride in the number of positive reviews we have received from satisfied clients. On AVVO, a lawyer rating website, we have received an 8.9 rating overall and many positive ratings from clients and colleagues.

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