A job transfer or the need to care for an aging parent may lead you or your ex-spouse to relocate and take your children. Texas family law governs how such changes take place. If you are planning an out-of-town move with your children, here’s some important information regarding parental rights and the responsibilities involved.
Post-Divorce Relocation Rules Under Texas Family Law
Texas Requirements for Relocation
Texas family law requires you to give the other parent timely notice of any significant change regarding your child’s welfare, health, and education. If you have primary custody of your children, and the divorce decree does not impose geographical restrictions, you’re free to relocate with them. However, you must tell your ex-spouse the new address unless the court has ordered otherwise.
Custody Disputes Can Arise
If the divorce decree includes a geographic restriction, a dispute can arise if the primary parent wants to move outside of the restricted area. Either parent can file a default modification case to make changes to the child’s custody. This process can involve going to court.
If both parents consent to the move, they can file an agreed modification petition. Either of these cases can make changes to medical, dental, or financial child support if needed.
How Disputes Are Settled
If you or your ex-spouse dispute some aspect of the proposed relocation, you have a contested case. The court must hold a hearing and decide whether to modify the order to allow relocation.
As in all custody cases, courts rule based on what is in the child’s best interest. If a child is at least 12 years old, they can sometimes tell the court and judge which parent they would prefer to live with.
If you face the issue of relocation involving your children after a divorce, consult Ronald D. Zipp, Attorney at Law in New Braunfels, TX. This knowledgeable and skilled family law attorney offers special insight, having served previously as a judge. Visit his website for more details about his divorce and custody experience or call (830) 629-5600 to schedule an appointment.