Scottsdale Child Custody Relocation Attorneys

Our experienced Arizona family law attorneys help Scottsdale and Phoenix metropolitan residents navigate child custody relocation in Arizona.

Why Choose BTL Family Law as Your Scottsdale Child Custody Relocation Attorney?

In family law matters few situations pose as much complexity as child custody relocation cases. Whether it’s due to a new job, a fresh start, or being closer to family, relocating with a child after a divorce or separation can be fraught with legal challenges, and navigating this terrain requires insightful legal assistance. As dedicated child custody relocation attorneys in Scottsdale, we aim to guide parents through this intricate process with clarity and compassion.

When it comes to securing a future that best serves you and your child, don’t leave it to chance. Choose the family law attorneys at BTL Family Law, where experience, empathy, and advocacy come together to guide you through your child custody relocation case.

Schedule a Consultation with an Experienced Lawyer Today

Find Out What Your Rights Are

We are here to answer your questions, discuss your options, help you understand your rights, and, if we represent you in your case, our lawyers will guide you through every step of the process as efficiently as possible.

What Laws Govern Child Custody Relocation in Arizona?

Child custody relocation cases arise when a parent with custodial or joint custody intends to move to a different geographical location, substantially changing the distance between the child and the non-relocating parent. Whether it’s across the state or across the country, such moves can have significant implications for parental rights, child custody, and visitation arrangements, making these cases particularly complex and delicate within family law. 

Moving your child out of state, or more than 100 miles within the state, can trigger what is known as a “relocation” in Arizona family law. Of course, in a relocation case, there are two sides to the coin. One parent wants to move with the child, and the other parent wants to prevent the move. In order to relocate—or to prevent relocation—certain steps must be taken. Failure to follow the correct procedures can have serious consequences.  Our firm has represented both parents seeking to relocate with the minor children and parents seeking to prevent relocation.

The Legal Process of Relocation 

When contemplating moving with your child (or wanting to prevent relocation), the first place to look is your parenting plan. Sometimes, parenting plans can have provisions specific to relocation. 

Notice of Intent

If both parents live in Arizona, the parent with physical custody intending to move with the child must give the other parent 60 days’ advance written notice. This notice of intent to relocate can be negated if the parents agree otherwise in writing or if the court has deemed the non-relocating parent to pose harm to the child.

This 60-day notice allows the non-relocating parent to contest the proposed relocation. If a relocation dispute arises, the court makes the final determination based on various factors, primarily considering the child’s best interests. The non-relocating parent has 30 days after receiving notification to file a petition opposing the relocation.

Factors for Consideration

If the non-relocating parent objects, the matter goes to court. The court will then evaluate various factors to determine the child’s best interests. Some factors under consideration include reasons for the proposed move, the child’s relationship with each parent, the likely impact of the move on the child, whether the move would impair the child’s relationship with the non-relocating parent, and more.

Approval or Disapproval

After evaluating all relevant information, the court will decide to grant or deny the petition. If the relocation is approved, modifications to parenting time and visitation schedules may also be considered.

Enforcing the New Custody Order

Once the new custody order is in place, it is legally enforceable. Failure to comply can result in legal consequences.

Due to the complex nature of relocation cases, guidance from thoroughly knowledgeable child custody relocation attorneys is essential. These professionals can help protect your rights, ensure your compliance with all legal procedures, and advocate for you and your child’s best interests. At BTL Family Law, we are well-equipped to provide the support and counsel you need to navigate this challenging process.

Can You Move with Your Child?

People are often faced with having to consider a move to another state or a move of significant distance for various reasons. 

  • Does a parent—or their spouse—need to relocate for work? Maybe their employer closed a location or merged with another company, and the employer is requesting that they transfer.
  • A parent—or their spouse—has been offered a better employment opportunity in another state. Perhaps this opportunity presents better pay, considerably better benefits, and/or room for advancement in the profession that could not be obtained in Arizona.
  • A parent has lost their job and is unable to find employment in Arizona. That parent may need to move to a place where they have financial support or family to help care for the child while they are looking for work or while they are starting a new career.
  • Parents have also sought relocation for personal health reasons or to care for a family member.

The specific reasons for relocation, as well as the other parent’s involvement in your child’s life, can have a major impact on your case and trigger certain procedures that must be complied with. Ultimately, the court’s focus is on the best interests of the children.  As such, the court will order what it believes is in the best interests of the child.

What Custody Laws Regulate Moving Out of State with a Child in Arizona?

Navigating the terrain of child custody relocation in Arizona calls for a comprehensive understanding of family law, careful planning, and strategic execution. At BTL Family Law, our team of skilled child custody relocation attorneys is committed to providing you with effective legal counsel and representation through each step of the process.

Understanding Your Situation

Every relocation case comes with unique challenges and circumstances. We start by getting to know your situation, allowing us to understand your objectives and design a personalized legal approach.

Managing Legal Obligations

From preparing and serving a proper notice of intent to relocate to managing the intricacies of court proceedings, we assist you in meeting all your legal obligations correctly and promptly.

Strategic Counsel and Representation

Whether your case involves mediated agreements, contested hearings, or court trials, our attorneys provide strategic counsel and fierce representation aimed at safeguarding your rights and your child’s best interests.

Advocate for Modifications

If approved for relocation, adjustments may be needed to existing visitation and parenting time schedules. We work to negotiate a reasonable plan minimizing disruption and maintaining a positive relationship between your child and the non-relocating parent.

Support and Guidance

The relocation process can be overwhelming. We stand beside you throughout, providing the support, clarity, and confidence you need to move forward.

With your family’s future at stake, you need the steadfast support of experienced Scottsdale Child Custody Relocation Attorneys. Trust us to guide you through this challenging journey to achieve a result that serves the best interest of your child and respects your parental rights.

Frequently Asked Questions About Child Custody Relocation in Arizona

In Arizona, courts evaluate a variety of factors to determine the child’s best interest during a relocation case. Some of these factors include the reasons behind the proposed move, the relationship between the child and each parent, how the move will impact the child’s physical, emotional, and educational well-being, the feasibility of preserving the relationship between the child and the non-relocating parent (through visitation, for instance), and the potential benefits the child may enjoy due to the move, among others. Each case is unique, and the court balances these reasons to arrive at a decision that prioritizes the child’s best interests. 

Should the non-relocating parent oppose the move, the relocating parent will need to petition the court to obtain permission for the relocation. The court then evaluates the proposed relocation based on the criteria statutorily outlined to determine if the move is in the child’s best interests. If the court finds that it is, it may grant permission regardless of the other parent’s disagreement. Cases like these can become complex and contentious, making the presence of an experienced attorney crucial.

Yes, it can. After a parent relocates, modifying the existing child custody agreement might be necessary, as the move could substantially change the circumstances under which the original order was issued. This can especially affect the visiting and parenting arrangements. For instance, a move might necessitate changes to the visitation schedule or changes to transportation responsibilities. Understandably, the focus should be on accommodations serving the child’s best interests and ensuring their continued relationship with both parents.

Regardless of whether you think your move will trigger the relocation requirements or not, it is important to discuss your case with an experienced family law attorney. Even if the move does not specifically trigger the relocation requirements, moving can have a significant impact on your parenting time plan, depending on your specific situation. For example, a move may cause so much disruption to the children and the current parenting time schedule that the current schedule is no longer in the best interests of the children, making a modification of the plan appropriate.

Consider at least having a consultation with an attorney experienced in Arizona divorce. Divorce can be more complicated than people think, and there are issues that, if not correctly pleaded, could be lost. Consider consulting with an attorney before handling a divorce on your own to make sure you are proceeding appropriately.

The other side of a relocation case is when one parent wants to prevent the other from moving out of state—or further than the permitted distance—with the minor child. Often, parents receive either formal notice or informal notice of another parent’s intention or wish to relocate. If the parent fails to respond appropriately, it can have a significant negative impact on their case. Parents who become aware of the other parent’s intention or wish to relocate should promptly discuss the situation with an experienced family law attorney to ensure the appropriate documents are filed timely.

Contact a Scottsdale Family Law Attorney Today About Your Child Custody Matter

family law lawyer Randi Burggraff headshot
Child Custody Attorney, Randi Burggraff

If you’re considering a life-altering move or have been served a notice of relocation and need legal advice, don’t hesitate to contact our team at BTL Family Law. Dealing with a child custody relocation case can be daunting, but you don’t have to face it alone.

Our Scottsdale child custody relocation attorneys are prepared to provide trusted, compassionate, and effective legal counsel to protect your rights and advocate for your child’s best interests. 

Get started today by scheduling an initial consultation with our team. Let us guide you towards a resolution that supports your family’s future. Call us at (480) 351-5654 or fill out our online contact form, and we’ll be in touch to discuss your case and answer any questions you may have.

BTL Family Law – Scottsdale Office

8980 E Raintree Dr #110
Scottsdale, AZ 85260
P: (480) 307-6800

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