Move to Pennsylvania

Me my wife and our four children moved to NC 5.5 years ago with my job. We divorced approximately 10 months ago. She sent me an email today indicating she was looking at moving back to PA with the kids to be closer to her family and asked if I would strongly oppose this. I replied to her saying I would strongly oppose this. I see the children every 1st, 3rd and 5th weekend of the month, periodically during the week and for approximately three weeks in the summer. What are the chances that she would be able to do this if she pushed the issue and is there anything I can do to minimize the chances that she will be able to do this? Thank you

The mother would be able to move back to PA with the minor children if she filed a custody action and she could prove to the judge that a move out of state would be in the best interests of the minor children. If your custody terms are already in a court order, then the mother would have to file a motion to modify and she would have to prove (1) that there has been a substantial change in circumstances affecting the wellbeing of the minor children, and (2) that a move out of state would be in the best interests of the minor children.

Your arguments would need to show that the children’s best interests are served by staying in NC and that a move out of state would not be in their best interests. Courts will consider the length of time lived in NC, the children’s schools and activities, where their friends and family are, where the children are most familiar with, etc.

The decision will ultimately be up to the judge without a consent between you and the mother.

Anna Ayscue

Attorney with Rosen Law Firm Cary • Chapel Hill • Durham • Raleigh • Wake Forest

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