For Pennsylvania parents who have young children, life after a divorce can bring many unexpected changes. This includes the possibility of having to move. There are many reasons a person might wish to move after a divorce, but when there are children involved, the court will have to approve it. To do this, the court will examine a variety of factors.
Why would a court approve a move?
When deciding whether to approve a move, the court will consider if the parent is acting in good faith. The motivations behind the move will determine if the court feels this in the best interest of the child. Moves based on the desire to move far away from an ex-spouse or to keep that spouse from seeing the kids are considered bad faith moves. However, if the move allows the child to continue consistent visitations with the other parent or is based on the probability of improving quality of life or being closer to other relatives for additional child care support, the court will consider these good faith reasons to relocate.
What else will the court evaluate?
During the process of approving the move, the court will consider factors related to custody and parenting time, once again ensuring that the best interests of the child are served. These factors include:
- The child’s age
- The child’s relationship to each of the parents
- The child’s feelings about the relocation
- How far away the parent wishes to relocate
- How the move will affect the child’s schooling, home life and extra-curricular activities
- Any other options the parent might have besides moving
Moving might feel necessary to adults after divorce, but when the move affects the life of the child, the process becomes more complex. If you are considering a move, make sure you can prove that you are doing so in good faith and that it serves the best interest of your child.
Relocating with kids after a divorce