Can I Stop My Spouse From Moving Away With Our Child After Our Divorce?

The good news is that in Pennsylvania, your ex-spouse must obtain your permission, in writing, as well as the court’s permission, to move your child beyond a certain specified geographic distance from you, the noncustodial parent.

Act 112 of the New Child Custody Law defines relocation as any change in residence that has significant impact on the parent who is not moving to actually parent the child and exercise his or her custodial rights.

Thus, even if your child’s parent informs you that he or she is moving with your child, they cannot legally make that move – yet. They must serve you notice that includes detailing where they plan to move, why they are moving, how they plan to work the custody arrangement so that you can still exercise your parental rights, the school and the school district the child will be going to, and Counter-Affidavit Regarding Relocation.

The Affidavit is a paper that allows you to object or agree to the proposed move. The move does not even have to be out of state or even out of the county. If the move is in the same county but it is going to make it hard for you to exercise your custodial rights to your child, you can object.

You must have received this information from your ex-partner within 60 days of their proposed move. From that time, you will have 30 days to object by filing that Affidavit with the court, which will thus set in motion a court hearing. If you do not file this paper, then the move will default be allowed as your non-response is looked at as consent to move.

You can object to the move on the basis of the move itself or on the basis of the proposed custody schedule modification. If the person has already relocated, without court permission, the court could potentially sanction them. In a case such as this, moving without approval does not mean that the court will allow the move to stay in place.

Factors Courts Consider:

  • Stability of the child’s connection with each parent
  • Quality, extent of involvement of each parent with the child, as well as involvement of other significant individuals such as siblings and grandparents
  • Child’s age and needs and maturity level to handle such a change
  • Impact the moving or not moving will have on resources and opportunities available to both child and parent
  • Proposed arrangements that will continue to foster a strong parent-child bond with non-moving parent
  • Good faith intent of the parent who wants to move, or if the relocating parent has intent to harm the non-relocating parent’s bond with involved child
  • Child’s preference relating to the move, depending on the child’s age and maturity level

Seeking to Stop Your Ex From Moving With Your Child? Skilled Jenkintown Child Support and Family Law Attorney

When it comes to your children facing a proposed move that you are against, it is critical to know the law and know how to best protect your rights to parent your children.

To schedule a completely confidential consultation with a knowledgeable and caring family law attorney at Joanne E. Kleiner & Associates, in Jenkintown, PA, please call 215-886-1266 or you can fill out our intake form and we will contact you.

Keeping you focused on the big picture and the issues that matter most…Joanne E. Kleiner & Associates. We serve clients throughout Montgomery, Bucks, Philadelphia counties, and the surrounding areas in matters involving Social Services, Child Protection, child custody, support, divorce, and other family law matters.

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Montgomery County Bar Association
Pennsylvania Bar Association
International Academy of Collaborative Professionals