Custodial parents who choose to move to or away from Florida may need to ask a few questions before doing so. For example, it is important to consider whether the child is going to be better off in his or her new home. In some cases, being closer to grandparents or other family members isn’t the same as being close to the noncustodial parent.

Parents should be ready to justify the move and be willing to accommodate the noncustodial parent. This may require a willingness to adjust a visitation plan to allow for longer visits during school breaks. Generally speaking, the move must be for a legitimate purpose such as moving for a job opportunity.

In addition, it may be necessary to provide advance notice of the move. A failure to do so or to abide by any requirements of a parenting plan may not be a good look in court. The same is true if an attempt to move is seen as an attempt to restrict the noncustodial parent’s access to the child. Custodial parents should be ready to pay increased transportation costs or make other concessions as conditions of having a request to relocate approved.

After a child custody ruling is made, it may generally only be changed or altered with the permission of both parents. In some cases, a judge’s approval may be needed as well. An attorney may be able to help a parent create a compelling argument as to why he or she should be allowed to relocate. An attorney may also help negotiate a compromise that allows a parent to relocate without restricting the noncustodial parent’s access to the child.