Oftentimes, Columbus residents may find that the conclusion of their divorce proceedings does not bring with it the finality they were anticipating. They may find that remaining in relatively close proximity to their ex-spouses may continue to stir up the emotions that contributed to the end of their marriages. Thus, to assist in the process of moving on, they may choose to relocate (indeed, information shared by Move.org lists “Other family reasons” and “A change in marital status” amongst the most common reasons why Americans move). Yet relocating can be a complicated process when a divorced couple has children together.
One parent moving will almost inevitably complicate a custody plan (even if that move is within the same state). Because of this fact, a divorced parent who has custody of their children cannot simply move away without making their intentions known. According to Section 3109.051 of Ohio’s Domestic Relations Code, they must provide the court that issued their divorce decree with notice of their intent to relocate. The court may then forward on that notice to the other parent. If necessary, a hearing may then be scheduled to determine if the move necessitates a revision of the couple’s custody agreement.
One will notice that a hearing is not automatic in these cases. That is because the court may allow a divorced couple to amend their custody agreement to accommodate a move on their own. For parents wishing to relocate, this may be their best option, because it allows them to maintain control of their custody agreement and avoids the potential of the court imposing a modification that is unfavorable to them (such as reducing their custodial time and/or requiring them to share in the costs of the non-relocating parent traveling to see the kids).