After a divorce, parents in Indiana may look forward to moving into the future with peace and happiness not just for themselves but for their child as well. But life is always evolving and there may come a time when a custodial parent or a noncustodial parent needs to move to a different address for work reasons or personal reasons. Parents in such situations may be concerned about how this move will affect their custody rights. The following is an overview of parental relocation laws in Indiana.
Notice of intent
In Indiana, if a parent — whether they are the custodial parent or noncustodial parent — wants to move to a different address first they must file a notice of intent with the clerk of court. However, a notice of intent is not required if the move has been addressed in a previous court order, if the move will decrease the distance between the custodial parent’s and noncustodial parent’s home or if the move is twenty miles or less between the custodial parent’s and noncustodial parent’s home.
Factors courts will consider if a parent objects to the move
If a parent objects to the other parent’s move a hearing will be held to review and possibly modify the existing child custody order. The court will consider several factors when determining whether to modify a child custody order.
One factor is the distance the proposed relocation would create between each parent’s home. The hardship and financial expense the nonrelocating parent will incur if the move is granted will also be considered. Another factor is whether it is possible to preserve the relationship the nonrelocating parent has with the child through suitable visitation arrangements. If the relocating parent has a history of thwarting the nonrelocating parent’s contact with the child this will also be considered. The court will also consider the reasons the relocating parent wants to move and the nonrelocating parent’s reasons for objecting to the move. Finally, the court will consider any other factors that would affect the child’s best interests.
Learn more about parental relocation in Indiana
Both relocating parents and nonrelocating parents may have concerns about their contact with their child. However, there is hope for the future as courts will consider many factors before granting or rejecting a move. This post is for informational purposes only and does not contain legal advice. Our firm’s webpage on child custody modification may be of interest to those in Indiana who want to learn more about this topic.