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Can I move away with my child after divorce?

On Behalf of | Nov 4, 2022 | Child Custody & Support

You have finally been offered your dream job. This is a fantastic opportunity. The only trouble is the position will require you to move out of Wisconsin.

For divorced parents, this situation can pose a serious problem. You are the custodial parent and have a set custody arrangement with your ex-spouse to divide parenting time, but a relocation could change all of that. So, what are the details you should know about relocation after divorce?

1. You will have to give notice

You cannot simply move and relocate your child’s primary residence without informing their other parent. At least sixty days before the planned move, you must provide notice to the other parent if:

  • You will relocate more than 150 miles away
  • You will move out of state

Even if the move is within 100 miles, you will have to file a motion to relocate with the family court where you live – or where the judge confirmed your custody and placement agreement.

2. Your reason for moving matters

When you file a motion to relocate your child’s residence in Wisconsin, you will have to provide specific details about the relocation, including the reason for the move. The reason will make a difference.

Family courts will review the details you provide to determine whether to approve the motion and allow the relocation to occur. For example, if your reason is related to your job, there is a higher chance the court will approve it.

Even so, the most important factor that you – and the courts – will have to consider is the child’s best interests. Is relocation in their interests? Will they be able to maintain a relationship with both of their parents?

3. You must propose a new schedule

If you are the parent relocating, then it is generally up to you to propose a new parenting and placement schedule in your motion to the court. However, if you and your ex-spouse are in a place to collaborate, you may work together to create a new schedule that will work for your family and accommodate this new situation.

According to Wisconsin law, this new plan will also have to address the costs of the child’s transportation between your new residence and your ex-spouse’s residence.

4. The other parent can object to the move

Whether or not you and your ex-spouse are on good terms, they have the power to object to the proposed relocation. They will have to comply with Wisconsin rules and file their objection within fifteen days of your notice.

If you find yourself considering a relocation for any reason, you must ensure you understand the requirements of relocation and prepare yourself – and your family – for this potential change.