This is the next post in my series on the handling of cases in which an unmarried Melbourne parent wishes to relocate their child away from the state of Florida. My last article discussed how the establishment of paternity impacts child relocation cases. It is important to understand that, until paternity has been established, the biological father will not be considered “dad” as far as the law is concerned. This means that the father will have no right to oppose a move, but the mother may still face consequences for taking the child out of state. If you have questions about your situation, then it is strongly suggested that you speak with an attorney as soon as possible. In this article I will discuss whether parents may move their child out of state when paternity has been established, but there is no custody order. If you need assistance then contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.
There are many instances in which a father may be on the child’s birth certificate but the parents have never gained a custody order from the Court. If the mother, for example, wishes to move the child out of state then she may technically be able to to so. Florida’s relocation statute only governs situations in which custody (otherwise known as “time share”) has already been established. This means that a parent would not be in violation of the law, technically speaking, if they moved the child away. It is important to understand, however, that under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (known as the “UCCJEA”), the state in which the child last lived for six consecutive months will have jurisdiction over any custody proceedings. This means that the father who has remained in Florida, under my example, could file a custody proceeding in our state and request that the child be returned. How the Court will rule, in any given situation, is always going to depend on the specific facts of the case.
While no two cases are the same, it is generally advisable for a parent to seek the other’s written consent before attempting to move a child out of state. This is true even if no custody order is in place. If a parent simply moves, without gaining the permission of their counterpart, then there is a chance that the Court will view the moving parent’s actions as an effort to frustrate the remaining parent’s relationship with the child. This, in turn, may provide grounds for the Court to grant the remaining parent primary custody of the parties’ son or daughter. By gaining written permission to move, or an order from the Court granting such permission, the relocating parent can protect themselves against such issues.
If you are an unmarried parent and you are dealing with an out of state move, then contact my office today to speak with a Melbourne child relocation lawyer. I devote my practice to the handling of domestic relations law and I am experienced in dealing with such cases. We pride ourselves on providing a high level of service and we are ready to assist you. Contact us today to speak with an attorney. We also service clients in the Brevard County cities of Titusville, Cocoa, Palm Bay, Grant, Valkaria, and Rockledge, as well as in the Indian River County areas of Fellsmere, Sebastian, Vero Beach, Indian River Shores, and Orchid.