Does moving require a custody modification?

On Behalf of | Dec 20, 2019 | child custody

As if custody issues in any divorce were not complicated enough, one mother and child face more difficulties after moving from Italy to Ohio. With the international twist, the case actually rose to the attention of the Supreme Court. As the child is very young, officials are not clear whether the mother and child must return to Italy – the only home the baby has ever known – or whether it is in the best interest of the child for the little family to stay in the United States. 

While you or your former spouse may not have the same jet-setting distance in mind, you may consider moving out of Ohio at some point with your children. If so, there are a few things to think about and discuss first. 

  • Relocating out of state will involve a change to your custody plan. The state of Ohio does not allow families with a custody arrangement in place to move out of the state without going through the proper legal steps. This process can take up to a year. Though you may not want to plan around this timeline, do not try to move forward without this step. You may have to move back to Ohio if you leave without the proper custody modifications.  
  • Permission to move may depend on the age of the children. Ohio courts look at many factors in a relocation request, but the child’s age and attachment to her or his community is a huge concern. The courts always seek the decision that is in the best interest of the child. If you would like to move, you must show that the new location will benefit your kids.  
  • Discuss early who will take responsibility for travel expenses for visitation. In some cases, the moving parent may have to pay travel expenses for the non-moving parent to maintain court-ordered visitation or parenting time. Some couples also end up changing child support amounts to account for the new expenses related to visits between states.  

If you want to move out of Ohio, an attorney can help you sort through the most appropriate next steps in this complex area of Ohio law.