When two parents in Kentucky divorce, they sometimes choose to live in close proximity to each other, perhaps in the same city in which they lived while married, in order to make child pick-up and drop-off easier, and to lessen the stress the child may feel after a divorce. However, time marches on and lives change. Perhaps one parent gets a job offer the parent simply cannot refuse in another state. Or perhaps a parent remarries, and wishes to live in another state with the person's new partner. Or perhaps a parent wishes to raise the person's child in another state to be closer to family. Whatever the reason, parents may find themselves in a situation after a divorce in which they wish to move to another state with the child. However, Kentucky law has something to say about this.
The Kentucky Supreme Court issued new guidelines in October 2008 regarding the ability of a divorced or unmarried parent to move to another state with their child. If a parent wants to move with the child a significantly far away from the other child's parent, the moving parent needs to either have the permission of the child's other parent or the permission of the court. Moreover, if such a move is permissible, it will be necessary for the parents' current child custody and visitation order to be modified.
If parents cannot reach an agreement as to whether one of them can relocate with a child, they must turn to the court to make such a decision. As is the case with other family law issues regarding children, the best interests of the child is the standard the court will use. There are a number of factors the court may consider. For example, the court may consider how far away the relocating parent wants to move, as well as the reason why the parent wants to relocate. The relationship the child has with the parent who wants to move will also be a factor. The effect that the relocation will have on the other parent's parenting time may also be considered. Finally, the opportunities such a move will present the child may be considered.
Attorney Louis P. Winner represents parents in relocation cases, whether it is the parent who wants to move or a parent opposing a move. He understands that every family is different and no two relocation cases will be alike. His webpage provides more information about child relocation laws in Kentucky.