Whether child custody relocation is permissible depends upon the state in which the child custody case was initially decided. Some states, including Minnesota and North Dakota, will allow relocation if the parents have an agreement in place that contains express consent and a proposed visitation schedule.
Absent an agreement, courts in both Minnesota and North Dakota will consider the best interests of the child when determining whether to grant relocation requests. They will also consider the reasons for relocation, such as remarriage, a job opportunity or an educational opportunity. Applicable state laws also vary depending on whether the proposed move is in state, out of state and how far away the requesting parent is seeking to move. The parent requesting relocation must be able to show that the move would be in the best interests of the child.
The court will balance the reasons for the move against the best interests of the child and will consider several factors, including the effect the move would have on the child, the child's relationship with their family members, the child's preferences if the child is old enough, any history of domestic violence, any evidence of bad faith by the parent seeking relocation and each parent's willingness to facilitate a close relationship with the child and the other parent.
The attorneys at Melinda Weerts Law, PLLC have more than two decades of experience in family law, including child custody matters. We can help parents seeking relocation to understand the requirements and work together with the other parent to facilitate approval of the request. Our skilled attorneys are licensed in both Minnesota and North Dakota and our firm handles relocation matters for clients in both states. For more information, please visit our website.