Best interests of the children vs. any harm that may result

Move-Away Orders in Southern California

Newport Beach Family Law Attorneys

When two parents divorce and share joint child custody of their children, the matter is never completely settled, for one day either parent may need to move away. A custodial parent who moves out of the state or into another county must consider how it will affect the noncustodial parent’s accessibility and visitation rights. California is roughly 800 miles north to south, so it is more than possible to move a great distance away without even leaving the state. The legal ramifications must also be considered, as moving without a judge’s approval could violate California family law.

Holstrom, Block & Parke, a Professional Law Corporation, make it easy for divorced parents to understand and exercise their custody rights, as well as to find a way to legally move away when necessary. Cases often begin with a move-away petition that must be reviewed by the court, so we focus on gaining approval on the first try. Give us a call at (714) 770-8062 to receive a phone consultation and learn more.

Modifying Custody Orders Due to Relocation Disputes

Relocating to another city, county, or state is a life-changing occurrence that the court will view as “significant” from a legal standpoint. In order for the relocation to be approved, child custody modifications will be necessary. In turn, a modification will only be granted if the child’s best interests, health, and happiness are not disrupted by the change.

The court will weigh the following when considering relocations and modifications:

  • How far away the relocation is planned
  • Age and health of the child
  • Child’s relationships with each parent
  • Whether or not the child openly objects to a move
  • Current visitation or custody agreements

It should be noted that if the court does not approve of a child custody modification, the judge may still approve of a visitation agreement modification. To offset the move but not technically change parentage rights granted through custody, the noncustodial parent could be granted extended visitation time with the child, such as spending an entire weekend with them once a month rather than a few hours a week.

Relocation Laws Specific to California

The controlling California family law statute concerning relocation and move-away orders is California Family Code Section 7501, which states:

  • “A parent entitled to the custody of a child has a right to change the residence of the child, subject to the power of the court to restrain a removal that would prejudice the rights or welfare of the child.”

Our Attorneys are Waiting to Help You

Do you need to relocate with your child and require a move-away order? Is your ex-spouse planning on moving away and you believe it violates your custody rights? Our Newport Beach family law attorneys can assist you with parental relocation concerns, whether you are the one staying or leaving. Contact our team for additional information about your rights and our legal services.