A Columbus Ohio Family Law Lawyer article on Moving or Relocation.
This article is the third in a series about moving and how it relates to Ohio child custody, shared parenting and visitation. To read the other articles in this series, see
In situations where court ordered parenting time has already been established, and the residential parent or the school placement parent intends to move, the first issue that must be addressed is notice to the other parent. See http://www.cornwell-law.com/12/a-columbus-ohio-family-law-attorney-on-moving-and-relocation-part-1 for information regarding notice of a move.
Once issues of notice have been properly taken care of, the next question becomes – what does this mean for your parenting order? Are changes needed? If so, what are they?
If the parents can agree regarding the appropriate changes to their parenting plan, if any, then the parties can submit appropriate paperwork to the Court to modify their parenting orders. But what if the parties cannot agree? If parties cannot reach an agreement on their own, if they wish, they may request the help of a mediator to reach agreement. In addition, the Local Rules of your court or the terms of your parenting order or shared parenting plan may require you to attempt mediation before filing a motion with the Court.
If the move is imminent, and you believe time is of the essence to make sure that your Child is not permanently removed from the State, you may need to seek an Ex Parte Temporary Restraining Order.
If the non-moving parent is unable to reach agreement with the moving parent regarding moving the Child and/or the revised terms that should be in the parenting order, then the non-moving parent is left with two choices:
- Do nothing and hope that the other party will allow you reasonable access to your Child from the new location. If you do this, your court ordered access remains the same as your prior order, although it may now be difficult and expensive to follow it. Or,
- File a motion with the Court to change your custody, shared parenting, school placement parent, or parenting time. In addition, you may wish to file a motion to modify child support to accommodate the travel expenses that are now involved in visitation.
Before an Ohio court can modify custody, terminate shared parenting, or change the school placement parent, Ohio Revised Code 3109.04 requires that the Court must first find there has been a change in circumstances. See Supreme Court cases Fisher v. Hasenjager, 116 Ohio St.3d 53, 2007-Ohio-5589 and Davis v. Flickinger.