Walla Walla Relocation Lawyer
A relocation can negatively impact even the best relationship between divorced parents. For parents who do not have a good relationship already, such a change could make a child custody arrangement even more strained. While a court typically cannot stop a parent from relocating, it could help resolve custodial issues and whether a child could accompany their moving parent. Whether you are the custodial or non-custodial parent, a Walla Walla relocation lawyer could work to protect your rights and help you and your child receive a positive outcome for your lifestyles and futures.
If retained, a practiced family law lawyer could assess your circumstances and potentially provide legal representation. Working with an attorney who understands relocation cases and the rules that may apply to them could substantially increase a person’s success in court.
Custodial Parent Relocation
In Walla Walla, Washington, a custodial parent typically cannot move with their child at any time. They generally must instead follow a formal process under Washington state laws.
According to Revised Code of Washington §26.09.480, a custodial parent may need to send notice to the non-custodial parent, as well as any people who have court-ordered visitation rights with the child, at least 60 days before a proposed move. Relocating with a child without filing notice can result in serious legal consequences.
Non-Custodial Parental Rights
Non-custodial parents may file an objection to a relocation within 30 days of receiving notice from the custodial parent, with a few minor exceptions. If the child stays within his or her current school district, the non-custodial parent typically cannot file an objection. If no objection is forthcoming, the courts generally permit the relocation.
A court order is needed for the custodial parent to relocate with their child during the 30-day period immediately after giving notice to the other parent, although exceptions also exist in this situation. However, if the non-custodial parent does not object to the relocation, that does not always mean the situation is resolved.
All relevant court orders regarding custody and a parenting plan generally must undergo the process of modification. A Walla Walla relocation attorney could be of particularly great help during this aspect of the relocation process.
Factors a Walla Walla Court Considers
In making the decision of whether to approve child relocation, the court often takes various factors into consideration. These include:
- The stability and strength of the child’s relationship with the non-custodial parent and members of the non-custodial parent’s family
- Whether disruption of the child’s life with the custodial parent is more harmful to the child than the disruption of life with the non-custodial parent
- Any special needs of the child
- The child’s age, stage of development, and the relocation’s impact
- The quality of life in the geographic area of the proposed move
- The financial impact of the relocation for either parent
Ultimately, the custodial parent typically must prove that the relocation is in the best interests of the child. A qualified relocation lawyer in Walla Walla could research different ways of demonstrating your intent.
Speaking with a Walla Walla Relocation Attorney
For either parent in a divorce, one parent’s relocation can cause uncertainty about child custody matters. While these cases are often complex, experienced legal professionals are equipped to sort them out efficiently and in the child’s—as well as your—best interests.
A Walla Walla relocation lawyer could assess either party’s legal options regarding relocation and review the unique circumstances and needs of the child in detail. If you are a custodial or non-custodial parent dealing with relocation issues, call our office today to arrange a consultation.