Can you move away if you share custody of your child?

Whether you want to move across the county or to another state, you must consider the impact on the child and the other guardians.

A move that makes it difficult for the non-relocating parent to participate in their share of the parental responsibilities requires approval from all custodial parties and the courts.

What is the first step when wanting to relocate?

You must first inform all other guardians about the intended relocation. According to Pennsylvania law, the notification must occur at least 60 days before the scheduled move. If it is less than 60 days before, and you cannot reschedule the move, you have ten days after learning about the move to make the notification.

The notification documents must include:

  • information about the child’s new school
  • the reason for the move
  • the new address
  • names of other people that could live with the child in the home
  • a suggested custody arrangement

What should the other parent do if they disagree with the move?

If the non-relocating guardians disagree with the proposed move, they are responsible for filing an objection within 30 days of receiving the notification. They should file the objection with the court and send a copy to you through certified mail.

What happens after filing all the paperwork with the court?

There may be pre-trial meetings and several court hearings when a judge receives a relocation petition. At a minimum, one hearing is necessary for a judge to rule on the relocation request. A judge considers many different aspects of the proposed move and makes their decision based on what is in the child’s best interest.

Relocating with your child takes planning when you share custody with another parent. Following the state’s procedures may help the move go smoothly.


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