You may be worried that your co-parent’s relocation with the children could affect your involvement in their lives. However, one parent cannot just decide to move with the children if custody is shared. There is a legal process involved if your co-parent wishes to relocate with underage children.
First, it is important to understand what amounts to relocation under Louisiana law. A temporary change in residence (for less than 60 days) is not considered relocation. However, relocation laws apply when a parent wishes to move outside the state or more than 75 miles from the child’s primary residence.
How it works in Louisiana
Your co-parent must notify you in writing of their intention to relocate with the children at least 60 days before the move. In cases where it is impossible or unclear, your co-parent must inform you no later than the 10th day after they have the information.
The notice should include details about the change of residence, such as the new address, the date of the potential move, a brief statement on the reasons for the move and a proposed schedule of custody taking into account the relocation.
You have 30 days to object once you are served the relocation notice. If you do, there will be a hearing where the judge will determine whether to approve the relocation based on the children’s best interests.
Protecting your parental rights
A relocation can negatively affect the bond you have with the children. It can be impractical to cross state borders regularly to spend time with your kids. In addition, you will no longer be a constant presence in their lives.
Understanding and utilizing the available legal solutions to such a situation can help you safeguard your rights and interests as a parent.