If you are the primary custodial parent of a child in Washington state and may be looking to move and relocate that child, you need to be aware of the impact of your move on your continuing right to custody. Moving out of the school district or out of state may put your custodial rights in question. According to Washington state law on custody modification, "When entering or modifying a court order, the court has the authority to allow or not allow a person to relocate the child."
Cogdill Nichols Rein Wartelle Andrews (CNRWA) offers a full array of family law services, including counsel and representation of a parent who wishes or needs to relocate, or objects to the other parent's relocation or proposed revised residential schedule. We will help you protect your parental rights as well as your child's well-being.
Considerations Before You Move
You may be contemplating a move to:
- Accept a new job
- Care for elderly parents
- Go back to school
- Follow a new spouse to another geographical location
Before you move, be aware of what the critical issues are related to custody before settling on a relocation plan. Understanding your obligations to give notice and renegotiate parenting time schedules is very important. A long list of detailed state laws addresses the rights and responsibilities of parents who choose to relocate. As in all child custody issues, the best interests of the child is the guiding principle.
Consult with a knowledgeable family law attorney to discuss your concerns and create a strategy for resolving any disputes.
Beware the temptation to informally negotiate changes in parenting plans with your ex-spouse or partner. You need a new court order to account for parental relocation if you will have revised custody and visitation arrangements.
Our Firm Is Prepared To Help
From offices in Snohomish County, our family law attorneys can appear in courts throughout the state and the nation and are prepared to represent out-of-state family law clients with children who live within the jurisdiction of Washington courts.
If you would like to speak with a Seattle and Everett area lawyer at our law firm, please contact our office by phone or email.