There are many reasons a parent may choose to relocate with their children to a new state, including employment opportunities, financial needs and family support networks. But when that parent is divorced from their children’s other parent, obtaining permission to move out of the area can be quite difficult. As of 2017, the law in New Jersey states that in relocation applications where the parents share joint legal custody, the standard for whether permission to move is granted depends on whether the move is in the best interest of the children.
A party seeking to relocate out of New Jersey will need to file an application with the court and set forth the reasons for the relocation. If there is opposition to the proposed relocation, the court will likely schedule a trial on the issue. Under the current law in the state, it is common for one party to choose to retain an expert, or even utilize a joint expert with the other parent, in order to evaluate the best interest of the child.
Typically the courts will take the following into account before offering a ruling:
- The nature of the child’s relationship with each parent
- The true intent of each parent seeking and opposing the move
- Any prior agreements between the parents
- The age and developmental stage of the child
- The emotional and physical impact of the move on the child
- The ability to establish an alternative visitation arrangement with the noncustodial parent
- The child’s preference
If you or your spouse is seeking to relocate with your child outside of the State of New Jersey, call the attorneys at DeTorres & DeGeorge Family Law Attorneys at 908-304-9679 to schedule a consultation.