Sheehan & Associates, P.L.C.

Can I move with my child if there is a child custody order?

Most people who decide to move can do so without a second thought. For some people, child custody orders might mean that making the decision to move comes with the need to make sure the move is legal. In Michigan, there are some instances in which changing a child's residence might require that you go back to court if you have a court order for child custody.

When can't a parent move a child's residence?

There are two specific cases in which a parent wouldn't be able to change a child's residence unless they take the time to get a court order. One of these is if the child custody order requires approval before the child is moved more than 100 miles from the current residence that is listed on the order. The second is if the child custody order prohibits a move out of the state without prior court approval.

What happens if a parent doesn't agree with the move?

If one parent wants to change the child's residence but the other parent doesn't agree, a motion regarding the move must be filed with the court. This motion starts a process that can involve an investigation by the friend of the court, a hearing in front of the judge, and a decision by the judge.

What is considered if the judge has to decide the case?

If the judge has to decide if the move should be allowed, the judge will consider the reason for the move, how a parenting time schedule would be affected, and how finances would be affected. If a parent is trying to move only to stop the other parent from being able to see the child, the court will likely deny the motion to change the child's residence.

If you are facing a case regarding a change of residence, you should ensure you know your rights. You should also understand your options for handling the matter before you make any decisions.

Source: Michigan Supreme Court, "Michigan Custody Guideline," accessed July 01, 2016

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