Divorce itself can be difficult and complicated, and this is typically made more so when children are involved. Parents may work out custody agreements independent of the court, but if they cannot decide the court will step in. and make the decision for them. Once a custody agreement is established in New Jersey that is not necessarily the last word. While one parent may have primary or even full custody, there are implications if that parent needs or wishes to relocate. Potential issues with relocation are not necessarily limited to a move out of state.
A move out of town or out of state that will significantly impact the current custody arrangements will most likely require the agreement of the noncustodial parent and the court and should be settled well ahead of any planned move. If a parent desires to relocate for a job, it may be a good idea to settle any issues regarding a custody order before any final plans are made. Otherwise, the other parent or the court could potentially throw a wrench in one's plans.
The parent who is moving either needs a signed consent order from the other parent or needs to file a motion in court. In addition, one needs to notify the other parent of the details of the proposed relocation, including reasons for the move, proposal for a revised custody or visitation schedule, and any new contact information such as phone numbers or addresses. The firmer the agreement is prior to the move, the less hassle one may face down the road.
In today's very mobile society relocation may be needed for a job. Anyone in New Jersey who is facing such a situation may wish to consult with a family law attorney to help ensure that all legal bases have been covered. Moving can be difficult for children and adding parental strife would not be helpful to anyone.