Hackensack Relocation Lawyer

Divorce may have an impact on the physical presence of your child— a compassionate child custody attorney at our firm may be able to help.

Divorce can upend many aspects of a child’s life: what place your child calls home; whether or not they call a second place (an apartment, a condo, a rental, etc.) “home”; what school they attend, whether they need mental help – therapy – or not. Our goal is to make the process of divorce as easy as it can be on a child, but even in the best of circumstances, it can be tough on children, of course, as their parents split up.

One of the biggest changes, though, might be if you or your co-parent decide to make a substantial move. Maybe it’s because you got hired for that dream job, maybe there’s a new significant other in your life, maybe your co-parent wants to move closer to their family after the divorce… maybe you just desperately want a serious change of scenery. Whatever the reason, the relocation of a child after divorce is a substantial process and one the Court takes very seriously (especially as it must adhere to the guiding standard of the Court: is it in the best interest of the child?). A Hackensack relocation lawyer may be able to help.

Let’s look at both sides of the map if this is an issue that may affect your divorce:

If you want to relocate out of New Jersey with your child: 

You’re going to need either your co-parent’s consent or the Court’s order to do so. (In this case, the law is applied to a minor who was born in New Jersey andor a child who has lived in the state for at least five (5) years.) There’s no way around this, so it’s worth considering:

  • Do you think your co-parent will consent to this? Do you think there will be a way for you and your lawyer to present this to your co-parent as being in the best interest of your child? Obviously, this is the easiest path forward. If you and your co-parent have a civil relationship, you may even be able to explain to them why you want to do this and discuss options for substantial parental visitation.
  • Failing your co-parent consenting, you and your lawyer may be able to make the case to the Court that – whether it’s a substantial amount of money that you’re receiving at a new job or a network of family members around who will help care for the child – it really is in the best interest of your child, even against your co-parent’s wishes. But this is, without a doubt, the tougher road.

O’Cathain Law Group Family Law Department has lawyers who have successfully petitioned the Hackensack Court for child relocation before. Your lawyer – and your dedicated family law paralegal – will work with you to make sure you have the best shot at relocation. Before you decide upon relocation, be realistic about your expectations and what it will take, as well. Do you have the kind of civil co-parenting relationship with your soon-to-be-ex-spouse that you can both rationally discuss this? Or do you know that this is a non-starter, and you’ll have to compel the Court to consent to the move? As discussed, this is a big and difficult step, and you need a lawyer to be honest with you as you decide whether relocation with your child is a real possibility legally.

Additionally, what will the parenting time for the non-custodial parent look like if you are allowed to relocate? Does it involve your child traveling to them or the non-custodial parent coming to the child? If you are allowed to relocate, are you prepared to be generous in your thoughts on parenting time— for instance, perhaps sacrificing certain holidays? You may be able to gain some wiggle room with your co-parent if, for instance, you are willing to give up big holidays early.

These are all worthwhile aspects to discuss with your attorney prior to beginning to attempt a relocation.

If you want to stop your co-parent from relocating your child out of New Jersey:

Since this is a reactionary step, and the burden of convincing the Court that relocation is in the child’s best interest falls on the relocating parent, it’s obviously substantially easier to refuse permission for your request. You should still, of course, consult with a Hackensack children relocation attorney, but if the relocation negatively affects an agreed-upon parenting plan (especially one that is part of your divorce judgment), it will be significantly harder for the co-parent wishing to relocate the child to convince the Court it’s in the child’s best interest.

However, as it does pertain to your child’s happiness as well, it’s wise not to dismiss relocation out of hand and to really consider whether it would work best for your child.

Key Factors 

What are the reasons the Court may or may not grant a relocation request? They include but are not limited to:

  • The co-parents’ abilities to effectively co-parent.
  • The relationship between the child and their siblings, their stepsiblings, and their family.
  • The physical and mental safety and health of the child and the co-parent.
  • Any history of domestic abuse whatsoever.
  • The child’s needs, desires, and preferences.
  • The child’s education and its natural progression.
  • The parent’s employment and how it relates to the proposed relocation.

Reach Out to a Hackensack Relocation Attorney

O’Cathian Law Group’s motto is Move Forward. Sometimes, we must consider exactly what that means: is it a physical move? A literal move? A figurative one? What we’re really saying is to turn the page on your divorce and move your family forward. It’s best to talk with your attorney about whether moving forward is a move away— a relocation— or moving forward should happen right where you are.

Want to relocate with your child? Or want to make sure your family stays exactly where it is? Either way, we can help. Call, fill out the intake form, or email a dedicated Family Law paralegal to speak with a Hackensack relocation lawyer at O’Cathain Law Group.