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Can my child and I move to another state?

If you are a divorced Kentucky parent and are contemplating moving to another state, you need to be aware that you must ask a judge’s permission to do so, even if you have residential custody of your child. The Legal Aid Network of Kentucky advises that the first thing you should do is notify your former spouse in writing about your planned move.

While you must give notice to your former spouse at least 30 days before your planned move, it is better to do it 90 days before so as to allow time for any delay in getting a court order approving your move. Your notice should include the following information:

  • Information about the court that handled your divorce, including the name of the court, the case number, the date of your divorce and the county and state in which the court is located
  • Both your and your former spouse’s full names
  • Why you are moving, such as because your employer is transferring you or because you have been accepted to a school
  • How you desire to change your current visitation schedule so that your former spouse will continue to have contact with your child

Be sure to sign your notice. Make a copy of it to file with the court. Mail the original to your former spouse, preferably by certified mail so you have proof of when you mailed it and when he or she received it.

Obtaining court permission

If you and your former spouse agree to a new visitation schedule, put the agreement in writing, signed by both of you, and file it with the court. If you cannot agree, the court must decide whether or not to approve your move and whether or not your former spouse should receive residential custody of your child due to your move.

As with anything having to do with child custody, the judge will consider many things about your planned move, including whether or not it is in the best interests of your child as well as you. While this information should not be taken as legal advice, it can help you understand the process and what to expect.

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