After a divorce, it is common to seek relocation. In New Jersey, if you are looking to relocate with your child after a divorce and the non-custodial parent opposes, you must take the issue to court. If you are considering relocating with your child after a divorce, contact an experienced Middlesex County, New Jersey Family Law Attorney who can help you with the relocation process.
Will I need court approval to relocate with my child after a divorce in New Jersey?
Under New Jersey law, children cannot be removed from the state without the consent of both parents. However, if the court does approve, they can relocate. Without permission from the court, a parent is not legally allowed to relocate with their child after a divorce. Courts require parents to proceed through the court system to ensure the child’s best interests and overall well-being are paramount when considering relocation.
How does the court assess what is in the child’s best interest?
When a parent wants to relocate with their child after a divorce, they must appear in court to explain their reasoning for seeking the relocation. If the parent has good faith reasoning, the judge may allow the parent to relocate. However, the most significant factor the court will assess is if the relocation is in the child’s best interest. When considering the child’s best interest, the court will look at:
- The parent’s ability to agree, communicate, and cooperate in matters relating to the child
- The parent’s willingness to accept custody and any history of unwillingness to allow parenting time not based on substantial abuse
- The interaction and relationship of the child with his or her parents and siblings
- Any history of domestic violence
- The safety of the child and the safety of either parent from physical abuse by the other parent
- The child’s preference, when the child can make an intelligent decision
- The child’s needs
- The ability of the home environment offered by parents
- The quality and continuity of the child’s education
- The parents’ fitness to exercise custody
- The geographical proximity of the parent homes
- The extent and quality of the time spent with the child before or after the separation
- The parent’s employment responsibilities
- The age and number of children
What factors are assessed at a relocation hearing?
A judge will assess several factors to determine whether or not you can relocate with your child after a divorce. A judge will assess:
- Why each parent is seeking or opposing the relocation
- The impact the relocation will have on the non-custodial parents, visitation, and parenting time
- The impact the relocation will have on the child’s life educationally, emotionally, and financially
- The impact the relocation will have on the child’s emotional and physical health
Several factors influence whether or not a parent can relocate with their child after a divorce. If you are trying to relocate with your child after a divorce in New Jersey, don’t hesitate to reach out to one of our devoted attorneys. It would be our pleasure to assist you in starting an afresh chapter in your life.