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Can My Ex-Wife Move to Another State With My Children?

relocation and child custody in OklahomaRelocation is often an extremely contentious issue as it relates to child custody. Whether or not a custodial parent can move to another state with the children is a question that is frequently asked by the non-custodial parent. This article describes what you can do if you have been notified that your ex-spouse is planning to move to another state with your children.

If your ex-wife is planning to move more than 75 miles away from her primary residence with your children, she must first provide you with a notice of relocation, which must include:

  1. the intended new address, including the specific address, if known;
  2. the new mailing address, if not the same;
  3. the home telephone number, if known;
  4. the date of the intended move or proposed relocation;
  5. a brief statement of the specific reasons for the proposed relocation of the child, if applicable; and
  6. a proposal for a revised visitation schedule with the children

The notice of relocation must be given to you at least 60 days prior to the move. If your ex-spouse moves without giving you notice, the court may order her to return the children.

If you receive a notice of relocation and wish to file a formal objection, you should do so as soon as possible. If you object too late, your ex-spouse may be allowed to move despite your disapproval. In fact, you have only 30 days from the date you receive notification to obtain a temporary or permanent order preventing the move.

You will then enjoy the right to have the court decide if the proposed relocation is being made in good faith or if it is merely an attempt to deprive you of your visitation rights. Whether or not your ex-spouse gave notice in time will be a major factor in the courts decision. Other factors can include whether or not the move is in the best interest of the child, the child’s relationship with each parent, the support network (or lack thereof) at the proposed destination and the overall affect the move will have on the child’s relationship with the non-relocating parent.

If the court finds that all legal requirements have been met and that the move does not threaten the welfare of the child, you ex-spouse will be allowed to relocate with the children. However, your divorce decree, including all of the rights and obligations it specifies, will remain enforceable under Article IV f the U.S. Constitution (the full Faith and Credit clause), which requires each state to uphold the “public acts, records, and judicial proceedings of every other state.”

Call Now for a Free Initial Consultation

If you are worried about your ex-spouse moving to another state with your children an experienced Tulsa divorce attorney can assist you. For a free consultation about child custody matters in Tulsa Oklahoma or in Tulsa courts, call Divorce of Tulsa Law Office today. Call us at 918-924-5526 to speak with an attorney who has experience dealing with this matter.