Parental Relocation

Residency restrictions are routinely included in today’s divorce decrees and SAPCR orders. A residency restriction usually means that the parent with the primary custody is legally bound to remain living within a certain distance from the residence of the non-custodial parent. The Texas Family Code provides that it is the public policy of the State of Texas to assure that children will have frequent and continuing contact with parents who have shown the ability to act in the best interest of the child. When a residency restriction is in place, parental relocation is legally impossible without an agreement/permission from the non-custodial parent.

Parents who find themselves in the following situations should seek advice regarding parental relocation from the Walker Law Firm:

  • You are the custodial parent who has had a change in circumstances and needs to relocate with the children
  • You are the noncustodial parent and have been recently informed that the custodial parent is going to move and take the children outside of the county.

If you are a parent on either side of a parental relocation dispute, it is important that you seek legal advice from an experienced family law attorney. If you are bound by a residency restriction, we encourage you to seek legal advice prior to moving away, to ensure that you do not jeopardize your custody arrangement by violating your court order. If your relationship with your child will be affected by the other parent’s contemplated move, a consultation with a family law attorney can still be helpful to better understand your rights to oppose the move or to insist on a fair visitation schedule with your child.