Move Away Requests


Get expert guidance for move away requests.

A “move-away” case is a case where one party wants to change the residence of a child to another county.  Even in cases where there is agreement among all parties entrusted with the care of a child, move-away cases can be challenging because if nothing else, the parental access schedule needs to accommodate potentially greater geographic distances between parties.  The Marcus Family Law Center, PLC has decades of experience in generating comprehensive parenting plans for parents and guardians who live far away from each other, including dealing with travel implementation and costs.

When one party opposes the move, the matter becomes more complex, especially if the move is time-sensitive (e.g. due to a marriage, job offer, or educational opportunity).  The Marcus Family Law Center has focused for many years on this very challenge, and we have some of the foremost experts on move-way law ready to facilitate or oppose a prospective move based on the best interests of the child.

If a party has sole physical custody, Family Code §7501 gives that party the right to determine the residence of the child, unless there is a court order saying otherwise.  In San Diego County, there is almost always such an order.  In other counties, the situation may vary case by case.  If the party who wishes to move away has sole custody, the only way to prevent the move might be to change custody.  Thus, move-away cases often grow to become full-blow custody cases.  The results in such cases often turn on proper presentation of evidence and witnesses, especially expert witnesses such as psychologists.  How the parties approach the proposed move in their communications with each other can be very critically scrutinized by the court, and so proper legal advice can be critical.

When move-aways involve foreign countries, there is often a concern about the enforceability of California orders.  There are safeguards that can be put in place including monetary bonds to secure compliance (and to pay for attorney fees if orders are violated).  The Marcus Family Law Center, PLC is also experienced at handling international custody matters under the The Hague Convention  on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Concluded 25 October 1980) as well as those custody matters involving non-Hague signatories.