Can You Relocate With Your Kids To Another State From Texas Using A Divorce Attorney?
Once you go through a divorce, it might seem challenging to get your life back on a good track, particularly if you’re simultaneously trying to navigate a new custody agreement while trying to move to another state. Before you leave the state with your children in tow, read this blog to educate yourself about the process so that you know you’re operating within the bounds of Texas family law.
Spouse Who Is Agreeable
First things first. If you have a spouse that’s agreeable to your relocating out of state with the kids, then you’re free to do just that. Any divorce decree simply has to state that you’re the conservator with an exclusive right to determining primary residence of the kids without regards to any geographic locations or just within a restricted area you’re allowed to relocate in.
Do by mindful of the fact that your spousal agreement might include geographic restrictions of more than just one place. For instance, you might agree to geographic restrictions that allow you to establish a primary residence for children in your hometown or Houston, which is Harris county and contiguous neighboring counties.
Can You Move Should Your Spouse Prove Disagreeable?
When your spouse isn’t agreeable, then it’s likely that your power to move might be restricted to certain geographical areas.
Section 153.001(a) from the Texas Family Code covers this, saying that the public policy of the state of Texas is to assure that children continue to have continuing and frequent contact with any parents that demonstrate the capability to act in the child’s best interests. Such parents are expected to provide environments for their children that are nonviolent, safe, and stable. It’s also public policy to encourage all parents to share the rights and duties of raising children once the parents might have undergone a separation or divorce.
The Family Code section goes on to say that when a court has to render an order that appoints parents as being joint managing conservators, then the court is to designate one conservator as one which has exclusive rights to determine the children’s primary residence. On top of that, the court must specify either a geographic area in which a conservator might establish primary residence for the children or if there isn’t any regard. A divorce attorney in Houston can help clear up any legal jargon that might be confusing to you!
Factors Considered In Court
The Texas Family Code doesn’t flat out state what factors that should be considered by a trial court when dealing with potential geographic restrictions as it relates to the best interests of any children. On the other hand, your divorce attorney in Houston will know that previous courts have looked into specific things in the past, including:
Possible reasons both for or against the move:
- Any opportunities the move affords
- Whether a move can assist in better meeting unique talents or special needs of a child
- The impact of a move on any relationships with various extended family
- The results a move would have on communication and visitation between the child and noncustodial parent
- The age of the child
- The ability of the noncustodial parent to relocate
It’s also critical to note that even when you’re appointed the sole managing conservator a child, then the court still has the power to restrict your ability to designate a primary residence of a child. Even though the Texas Family Code section that covers the appointment of duties and rights of a parent considered the sole managing conservator doesn’t specifically go into geographic restriction, it does dictate the power of the court to order such limits as it sees fit.
Make An Appointment For A Consultation
If you’re not yet sure whether you’re actually within your legal rights to move from Texas to another state in your current custody arrangement, then consult a divorce attorney in Houston prior to making any firm decisions.