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Custody logistics of moving a child out of Maryland

Divorce may demonstrate both confusion and devastation among parents and children. Especially in custodial decisions, a court holds the right to change your life completely.

During your divorce, the court granted your ex-spouse sole physical custody, but you hold visitation rights. Now, sadly, you learn that your ex-spouse plans to move out of Maryland.

You worry about your relationship with your child if he or she lives in another state, and you wonder what steps your former spouse must take to relocate. Though the decision of the court may rule in favor of moving your child, it may be crucial to understand the process and identify reasons in court for him or her to stay in Maryland.

A written notice is essential

For a court to order the approval for a relocation, specific actions must be followed. To legally move your child out of Maryland, your ex-spouse must provide “advance written notice”. You and/or the court must receive the notice at least 90 days before a relocation occurs.

Should you wish to file a petition against the move, you must do so within 20 days of the advance written notice. Once the court receives your document, a hearing will be scheduled to further examine the circumstances of the move.

Exemplifying the importance of your presence

In the court hearing regarding the relocation of your child, you may wish to argue against moving him or her using the following tactics.

  • Emphasize your strong relationship with your child
  • Explain the need for co-parent development
  • Demonstrate that your ex-spouse may wish to lessen your visitation rights by moving
  • Describe the positive experiences of your child in school and activities in Maryland
  • Stress that your visitation rights may decrease due to financial hardship of traveling

Highlighting the emotional and financial reasons to prohibit your ex-spouse from moving your child may prove crucial in stopping the relocation. Know that the safety and security of your child exceeds all parental reasons for a move out of state, so keep your child’s best interest in mind while debating to keep him or her close to you.

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