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Can You Move After a Divorce?

Posted on in Divorce

Often, after a divorce, both parents continue to live close together. However, when one parent wants or needs to move, and therefore takes the child with him or her, situations can become complicated.

In some cases the court must give permission in the form of an order of removal before a child can move away.

Distance Matters

Not all moves are the same. Prior to the Illinois family law changes taking effect January 1, 2016, a parent could not move with a child outside of the state without first obtaining an order of removal from the court. However, that meant that someone could move hundreds of miles away, still staying in Illinois, and making parenting time difficult for the other parent without the approval of the court. Someone else could not even move just a few miles if the move was across state lines.

However, after January 1, 2016, distance will be the primary factor in determining if a parent needs the permission of the court to move. If, prior to a move, a child lives in Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake, McHenry, or Will counties, then the parent can move anywhere within 25 miles without the permission of the court, even if the move is across state lines.

In the other counties of Illinois, a parent can move up to 50 miles without getting prior authorization from the court. However, moves that are over 25 miles and across state lines will require an order of removal.

What Factors Are Considered by the Court?

When a parent desires to move his or her child further away, then he or she must petition the court for an order of removal. Like most other court filings, a parent must serve a copy of the petition to the other parent. If the other parent agrees with the move, most of the time the court will issue an order of removal. But, if the other parent objects to the move, then the court will hold an evidentiary hearing.

The court requires that a move be in the best interests of the child or children involved. A judge will consider factors such as the following:

  • Is there an important reason for the move?
  • What are the child's needs?
  • Where will the child's needs be met best?
  • Will the move improve or worsen the child's situation?

The court must be satisfied that the overall situation of the child will improve. This includes how often the other parent will be able to have parenting time. Therefore, a parent's new job which pays more may simply not be enough of a reason for the court to issue an order of removal.

If you have questions about moving with a child, or any other issue after a final custody order has been entered, then you need to speak with an experienced DuPage County family law lawyer right away. Please call The Stogsdill Law Firm, P.C. today at 630-462-9500 to schedule your consultation.



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