After separated or divorced parents make arrangements for a schedule for each of them to see their children, one parent may desire to move to another place. A move could occur due to a job change, remarriage, or other reasons. Parties to a custody order must consider whether their proposed move constitutes a relocation. Under the custody statue, which was revised in 2011, a relocation is defined as “[a] change in residence of the child which significantly impairs the ability of a non-relocating party to exercise custodial rights.” 23 Pa. C.S.A. 5322(a).
Whether you are the parent seeking to relocate or the non-relocating parent, the family law attorneys at Vetrano|Vetrano & Feinman LLC can advise you of your rights and obligations under Pennsylvania law. The distance of the proposed move is not the sole factor when determining whether a move is a relocation. If the relocating parent’s proposed move would “significantly impairs the ability of a non-relocating party to exercise custodial rights” then a Notice of Proposed Relocation must be served upon the non-relocating party. The Notice of Proposed Relocation must include information such as the proposed new address, the name of the proposed school district and a proposed custody schedule.
The relocation process may move very quickly. The Notice of Proposed Relocation must be served at least 60 days before the proposed relocation unless there are extenuating circumstances. The relocating parent must also provide a counter-affidavit so that the non-relocating parent may object to the relocation or the proposed schedule. If the non-relocating parent was properly served and fails to file a counter-affidavit within 30 days of service, he or she waives their right to challenge the relocation. If you are considering relocating, or your child’s other parent has expressed a desire to move, contact the family law attorneys at Vetrano|Vetrano & Feinman LLC to discuss your family situation as time may be of the essence.
The relocation process can be difficult for all involved. The family law attorneys at Vetrano|Vetrano & Feinman LLC are experienced with the relocation process and can help you navigate it. We can work with you to determine if a resolution without litigation is possible. When settlement is not possible, we can have your relocation matter scheduled for a hearing so that a judge makes a determination on the proposed relocation. We can help you find solutions that work for everyone in the family, whether you are the parent seeking to move or to prevent a move that would significantly alter your time with the children. As always, however, the primary interest of the courts is what is in the best interests of the children, and that is often significant access to both parents.
Contact us today to learn more at (610)-265-4441 or visit us at Vetrano Law.
Our experienced family lawyers take the time to fully understand the financial and emotional complexities that can be involved in separating two lives. We offer the patience and resources to effectively guide clients through a divorce, addressing all the challenges they may face in moving forward with their lives. To learn more about how we can help protect your rights and interests in a complex divorce, contact the Pennsylvania divorce attorneys at Vetrano | Vetrano & Feinman LLC.