How To Win a Relocation Custody Case | Custody Relocation (Part One)

As hard as a contested divorce or custody battle may seem, a custody relocation trial can be more challenging. If you already have joint custody and are the primary custodial parent, asking for the judge's permission to relocate far from your current residence can be difficult. Preparation, documentation, and solid evidence are critical. The lack of any of these items can spell denial.

The pendulum of allowing a custodial parent to move just because there are better opportunities for remarriage or a new life is long since gone. Judges realize that the rights of both parents are to be protected. Be prepared to compromise, litigate, and pay substantial legal fees if you want to win.

How to Win a Relocation Custody Case in NY

To win a relocation custody case in New York, the custodial parent must prove that the move is in the child's best interests. The court will consider all relevant facts and circumstances of the case.

Keeping a calendar visitation log and the child's contact quality with each parent. Researching and documenting with evidence why relocation is in the child's best interests is also helpful.

Questions you can ask and things to do:

  • Does the other parent interact positively with the child by doing things with the child that are informative, educational, cultural, athletic, guiding, and nurturing, or do they sit at home watching TV and eating franks and beans?
  • Compare and contrast the current school district with the new district and compare the residential community of the current district to the new district.
  • Hire an educational expert who can testify rather than you say the new place will be better.
  • Hire a realtor to explain the differences between the two communities.
  • Explain to the judge why your search for better economic opportunities is not thriving here. However, an excellent job with future potential awaits you if relocation is granted.
  • Discuss the move with your child and learn not to tell the child what to do.
  • Does the child want to stay here or has good, strong reasons why a move is desired?

Types of Relocation Custody Cases

The easy cases, if there are such things, are where the non-custodial parent is a deadbeat who not only does not support the child but does not visit regularly and has not formed a bond with the child. Those cases are easy because if there is a lack of consistency and using the rights already granted when the non-custodial parent lives close by, then the interruption to parenting caused by relocation is minimal.

However, where the non-custodial parent pays child support, utilizes all visitation, attends extra-curricular activities, attends school conferences and awards events, and celebrates birthdays and holidays together with other milestones, the burden of proof for the parent who wants to move becomes exceptionally high.

Win a Relocation Custody Case With Our Suffolk County Lawyer

This blog post can only scratch the surface of what is needed or the facts needed to win a custody relocation case. An experienced divorce lawyer can help you decide whether to embark on this path and can guide you through the process to avoid obvious mistakes. An experienced divorce lawyer can help you compromise to gain permission on consent rather than after a trial.

My next blog will be to help parents who want to oppose and prevent relocation from taking place.

I have litigated both sides of custody relocation requests and have the real-time experience to help you. Please call my office before you start this battle and benefit from my 30 years of advice.