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How do I deal with moving my children after a divorce?

Jul 27, 2016

Getting a divorce is difficult enough, but add into the mix your children and the divorce can become very complicated. You have to deal with making decisions about who the children live with most of the time and access and contact arrangements along with all the other financial arrangements and the emotional side of your divorce too.

This becomes even more complicated if you or your ex-spouse decide that you want to move away to another part of the UK or even abroad after the divorce, particularly if you want to take the children with you.

So what are your rights, both as the parent who wants to move with the children and also as the non-resident parent who does not want to lose contact with their children?

English law, which covers England and Wales, says that you cannot take your children out of the country without permission from both parents or indeed anyone with parental responsibility.

If you are planning to move elsewhere in the UK or live abroad, the court will make a decision based on the welfare of the child or children. The court now takes into account the idea of shared care between both parents as opposed to just factoring in who the children mostly live with and there is a presumption by the court that both parents are involved in raising their children whether they are divorced or not.

Even if you already have a Child Arrangement Order in place, you can only take the children out of the UK for one month without getting permission from the other parent, so you will have to go back to the court to get a decision about any move away, whether abroad or not. This is due to the fact that if you move 300 miles away, the court order in place cannot be complied with as it stands.

Therefore, if you are the parent wishing to move you must first and foremost seek legal advice on your situation. Speak to a specialist Family Solicitor so you know where you stand.

You must also have a real plan in place when you move. You should have a job in place, schooling in place for the children, somewhere to live and an idea of who will look after the children. In other words, you can’t just move away to avoid your ex-partner.

You have to show how you will maintain contact with the other parent regularly. You’ll have to give practical plans on how this will happen and how often.

The court will then decide.

The parent staying behind will probably oppose the move. This can be a really difficult situation for them, and both parties should try and approach it with a conciliatory nature, trying to see it from both sides.

There is no denying it is a very difficult situation, but with help, advice and understanding you should find a compromise that works.

If you’d like help and advice on a move with your children after a divorce, please call our expert Family Law Team now on 01264 353411, email: family@bsandi.co.uk or contact us online and we’ll be happy to help.

 


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