Child support jurisdiction when child moves out of state

My husband and I have been separated for 2 years and currently share custody of our daughter 50/50. Due to him not working, I have been paying child support. We created our own informal separation agreement, and both signed it, agreeing on a child support figure. Nothing was filed anywhere, but I have been paying based on this agreement.

My husband now wants to move back to Syracuse to be closer to his family, and take our daughter with him. I have not decided whether to fight this - After supporting two households for two years I am in considerable debt and have no resources to fight him so I may just have to let them go.

So assuming my husband and daughter move back to Rochester, and assuming our informal separation agreement is not legally binding, my question is this - can he now file a claim for child support in NY (where child support is much more favorable for a dependent spouse)? Or would child support be calculated based on North Carolina law?


If North Carolina had issued an order on child support, then NC would retain continuing exclusive jurisdiction over the matter as long as you stayed in North Carolina. However, as there is no order in place, no state can claim continuing exclusive jurisdiction. If your husband files for child support in NY, you can raise the defense that NY lacks personal jurisdiction over you.

You also can represent yourself in a custody action. If you do not want your daughter to move to NY with her father, then file a complaint for child custody and represent yourself. You can get access to a library of legal forms and communicate with an attorney through our Rosen Online Service. This service only costs $199/month, and would be a great resource for you to handle your custody issues.