Muskogee Lawyer BlogCan I Relocate After Divorce With My Children?

relocate after divorceThe desire to relocate after divorce in Muskogee, Oklahoma can be a hot button topic. Relocation is a part of divorce as spouses separate. And sometimes, a parent chooses to move far away to get a fresh start.

However, if you want to relocate after divorce—especially out of state—you should check with your attorney before making any move to take your children with you.

Oklahoma Courts Still Have Jurisdiction

A divorce court in Oklahoma maintains jurisdiction over matters of child custody and support until the child or children turn 18. All matters concerning the care, support, and well being of the children of a divorced couple remain within the court’s purview.

That means that long after the divorce is finalized, there are still matters that can be taken up before the court by filing a petition asking the court to hear the matter. A parent’s choice to relocate after divorce is one of them, especially if the parent plans to take their children with them.

FAQ: Relocate After Divorce

Most often, it is in the best interests of the child to maintain a relationship with both parents after a divorce. When a custodial parent chooses to relocate after divorce, the non-custodial parent’s relationship with the child or children will suffer.

As a result, the Oklahoma legislature has enacted a statute requiring a parent wishing to relocate more than 75 miles away to first notify the other parent of the proposed relocation approximately two months before the move, or within 10 days of learning of the move. (Okla. Stat. tit. 43 § 112.3)

The notice is specific in terms of what it must contain. It must contain contact information, the reason for the move, and a proposed plan for continued visitation.

Thus, if you plan to relocate after divorce with your children, you should contact an experienced Muskogee family law attorney to prepare the notice and to help if your ex-spouse objects.

The very purpose of this statute is to give the other parent time to object. A parent has 30 days to file a formal objection with the court. If the other parent files an objection, the court will hear the matter and rule on custody and visitation issues.

The court cannot control your decision to relocate after divorce, but it can effectively control whether your children come with you and under what circumstances. This is effectively a modification of the existing child custody and visitation orders.

Time Is of the Essence

If you move out of state without issuing the required notice, the other parent may file a petition before the court to have the child returned. Failure to provide the required notice will work against you in the hearing requesting the modification.

Furthermore, failure to issue the notice may subject you to payment of your ex-spouse’s costs and attorneys fees incurred in the filing and presenting of the petition before the court.

If the non-relocating parent fails to object by failing to file a petition seeking an order to prevent the relocation within 30 days of receipt of the notice, the relocation will be deemed to be authorized by the non-relocating parent.

Free Consultation: Muskogee Divorce Attorney

If you wish to relocate after divorce, contact an experienced Muskogee divorce lawyer as soon as possible to protect your legal rights.

Call the Wirth Law Office-Muskogee today at 918-913-0725, or toll-free at 1-888-447-7262 [Wirth Law].

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