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Moving A Child To Another State
Relocations out of state due to a change in employment may be difficult for individuals who are divorced with children. The attorneys at Coodin & Overson, PLLP, have experience dealing with these situations and are ready to assist.
Minnesota law requires the parent with whom the child lives to refrain from moving the residence of the child to another state except upon order of the court or with the consent of the other parent, if the other parent has been given parenting time by the divorce decree. If the purpose of the move is to interfere with the parenting time given to the other parent, the court will generally not permit the child’s residence to be moved to another state.
Pursuing The Best Interests Of The Child
The court applies a “best interests of the child” standard when considering the request of the parent with whom the child lives to move the child’s residence to another state. The primary factors the court will consider in determining the child’s best interests include the following considerations, as provided by Minnesota Statute Section 518.175, subdivision 3:
- The nature, quality, extent of involvement and duration of the child’s relationship with the person proposing to relocate and with the nonrelocating person
- The age, needs of the child and the likely impact the relocation will have on the child’s physical, educational and emotional development
- The feasibility of preserving the relationship between the nonrelocating person and the child through suitable parenting time arrangements
- The child’s preference
- Whether there is an established pattern of conduct of the relocating parent either to promote or thwart the relationship of the child and the nonrelocating person
- Whether the relocation of the child will enhance the general quality of life for both the relocating custodial parent and the child
- The reasons of each person for seeking or opposing the relocation
- The effect of any domestic abuse
A parent who is seeking to move out of state with a child should seek the other parent’s written approval of the move in advance. The nonmoving party may either oppose the move or approve it conditioned on a change in the parenting time schedule. The parties should review the divorce decree to see whether it addresses relocations or requires the divorced parents to engage in mediation or any other form of alternative dispute resolution in advance of the move. If consent cannot be obtained, the parties can, through their attorneys, present their evidence and arguments to a judge. As courts routinely have delays, a party seeking to move should seek consent, engage in mediation if required and present a motion to a judge as soon as possible after knowing of the anticipated move to avoid undue stress and disruption.
Child relocation cases can be complex and challenging. To learn more about the legal issues related to relocation, read our related article.
Moving Across The Border? Contact Coodin & Overson Today!
Located in Lake Elmo, Minnesota, our law firm represents clients dealing with divorce and family law issues throughout Minnesota and Wisconsin. We receive a lot of inquiries from people wanting to move from Minnesota to Hudson, Wisconsin. Even though Hudson is considered a close suburb to the Twin Cities, it is still out of state.