This question comes up quite often. There are many reasons a parent may want to move. For example, a parent is offered a job opportunity, desires to move closer to family out of state for support, or remarries and their new spouse needs to move for work or school. These are all legitimate reasons and the move may have significant benefits for the child. HOWEVER, the answer is a BIG MAYBE. This decision profoundly affects the parent-child relationship for the parent remaining in Arizona without the child, so the court takes this very seriously. You will need to closely follow the legal procedures AND carefully prepare your case.
This statute is being revised and the new statute takes effect January 1, 2013. This law is also being reconsidered in the current 2013 legislative session.
The following are some basic, general provisions that aren’t changing: Relocation is governed by A.R.S. §25-408
The Basics of Relocation
How does the Court decide?
First, the Court will consider the custody factors in A.R.S.§25-403 and, then the court must consider the following additional factors:
As you can see there is a lot the court is required to consider. The legal hurdles of moving away from one of the child’s parents are significant; therefore, if you can work out a solution with the other parent that meets everyone’s needs you may be more likely to reach your goal. A lawyer, counselor or other professional can help you develop a plan to approach the other parent so you can try to reach an agreement before approaching the court. On the other hand, if the move is related to safety consult a professional about ways to protect you and the child.
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