Jurisdiction and Custody for Military


Currently I am paying NC court ordered child support. I am a military member stationed in New Mexico and my daughter is living in florida with her mother who is also in the military (we were never married). I wanted to know when filing for joint/split custody would I go through New Mexico, North Carolina, or Florida? Also I wanted to know do I have any rights as the non custodial parent to see her even witout a court order? Lastly as far as the child support order if my child’s mother wanted to modify the order would I have to be served in New Mexico or would North Carolina still have jurisdiciton and if so how can I get the order moved from North Carolina?


Jurisdiction for child custody matters is appropriatein the minor child’s home state. The home state is determined by the UCCJEA, a statute that has been adopted by the majority of states. You can read more about the UCCJEA on our site.

Without a custody order in place, both parents have equal rights to custody/visitation of the child, but the problem is that you don’t have means to enforce those rights if you don’t have custody.

As for the child support order, there is another statute, UIFSA, which explains how a court obtains jurisdiction for child support, and how a party can register a foreign order for enforcement or modification. Since neither party lives in NC now, either party could move to register the order to the state in which you now reside.