Relocation and Time-Sharing in Florida
Under Florida law, a custodial parent who wishes to relocate more than 50 miles away for a length of time of longer than 60 days must provide notification to the other parent prior to making any moves. Should both parents agree to the relocation, the former couple must file a written agreement with the court. If the parents cannot agree, then a hearing will likely be held so that a family law judge may decide whether or not to allow the move. The court may, however, view the relocation as creating a negative impact on the relationship between the non-custodial parent and the child or children; if so, a judge may not approve the move.
If you or someone you know is considering relocating with a child, and you have questions regarding rights and obligations under the law, contact an experienced Orlando family law attorney right away.
Factors a Court Considers
Like family court judges across the nation, a Florida family law judge must render a decision based on the “best interest of the child”. A parent who wishes to obtain permission to uproot a child from their home – and away from the other parent – must put forth a compelling argument before the judge. There are several factors that a court will consider when deciding whether or not relocation is appropriate. These include, but are not limited to how the move will impact:
- The child’s emotional, mental and physical development, taking into account child’s age and any special needs;
- The child’s relationship with the parent that wishes to relocate, the parent staying behind, siblings, and any others important to the child;
- The ability to maintain the child’s relationship with the non-relocating parent by providing alternative visitation arrangements; and
- The lives of the relocating parent and the child.
Courts will also inquire as to the reasons for the relocation, why – if at all – the other parent opposes the move, and any history of domestic abuse.
If a parent’s motivation behind the relocation is to deprive the former spouse of visitation rights, or to seek revenge on him or her, it will be difficult to obtain a favorable ruling. Likewise, if a parent objects to the relocation but has failed to meet other parental obligations or failed to take advantage of current visitation rights, a judge will likely not weigh the objections heavily.
Orlando Time Sharing Attorney
Competence and sensitivity is vital when seeking legal representation, particularly when it comes to family law matters. The law office of Steve W. Marsee, P.A. has served greater Orlando area with years of family law experience. Call today (407) 521-7171 to schedule your initial consultation.