Typically, people who share custody of a child will live within close proximity to one another. As circumstances change, though, one parent may want to move away and take the child with them. Whether such moves are permitted depends on numerous factors; when one parent is allowed to move away with a child, though, it can drastically affect the other parent’s visitation rights. If your co-parent wishes to move with your child to another city or state, it is in your best interest to speak to an attorney about your move-away visitation rights. The dedicated Dallas child custody attorneys of McClure Law Group understand the importance of protecting the parent-child relationship, and if we represent you, we will advocate aggressively on your behalf.Defining Where a Child Will Live in Custody Cases
In Texas, custody matters are handled on a case-by-case basis. In many cases, however, the courts will name the parents joint managing conservators of the child and will issue an initial custody order defining the geographic area where the child can live. They will grant one parent the right to determine the child’s primary residence, though, as long as it is within the established geographic area. In some cases, however, the courts may grant one parent the sole right to decide where a child lives, with no geographic limitations.
Parents involved in a custody dispute who want to have a more active role in the court’s decision can draft a written parenting plan and submit it to the court for approval. Similar to a court’s order, the plan may define a certain area where the child must live and grant one parent to determine the precise location of the child’s residence within that area, or it may allow one parent to decide where the child should reside. The court will only approve a parenting plan if it finds it to be in the best interest of the child. If the plan is approved, the court will issue an order that makes it enforceable.Move-Away Visitation
Texas does not have a specific statute that deals with the relocation of a child. In any custody case where a parent wishes to relocate with a child, the court will determine whether such a move is in the child’s best interest. In doing so, the court may assess various factors, including the reasons for and against the move, whether the desire to relocate arose out of ill-will or a valid motive, how the relocation might impact the health and well-being of the child, how it will affect the child’s relationship with both parents and their extended family, and how it will impact the child’s communication and visitation with the non-moving parent.
If the court permits a parent to relocate with a child, it often results in a modification of visitation rights, as well. In many cases, the courts will order the moving parent to cover the increased costs associated with the non-moving parent’s visitation. It is important to note that, even if a parent is permitted to relocate with a child, to the extent the non-moving parent has visitation rights, they are protected. Specifically, pursuant to Texas law, the UCCJEA (Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act), protects the rights of the non-moving parent. Among other things, it dictates that if Texas is considered a child’s home state, a court in the state of the child’s new residence will have to enforce any custody order issued by a Texas court.Talk to a Dedicated Dallas Child Custody Attorney
Most parents want to protect their right to see their child, but if their co-parent relocates the child to another state, it can dramatically impair their visitation rights. If you have questions about move away visitation, it is in your best interest to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. The dedicated Dallas lawyers of McClure Law Group have ample experience handling complicated custody matters, and if you hire us, we will fight to help you protect your parental rights. Our primary office is in Dallas, and we can meet clients for appointments at our Collin-County office in Plano. We frequently represent people in custody disputes in Dallas, Rockwall, Fort Worth, McKinney, Frisco, Richardson, Irving, and Garland. We also help people with family-law matters in cities in Dallas, Rockwall, Collin, Tarrant, Denton, and Grayson Counties. You can reach us by calling 214.692.8200 or using our online form to set up a confidential