Going through a divorce when there are young children in the picture can be a devastating experience for everyone involved. If you intend to relocate, this can impact your child custody or visitation rights.

If you have already been through your divorce when you make this decision, you will have to investigate your paperwork that has established the guidelines between you and your ex regarding your children and their visitation schedule. Usually there are some travel restrictions included in the original trial or custody meetings.

Arizona state laws

According to Arizona state laws, if you and the other parent have joint custody of the children, the parent moving must give the other parent a written notice at least 45 days before relocating the child out of state or more than 100 miles away within the state. If the parent does not comply with these laws, the court can impose a sanction which can affect parenting time or legal decision-making ability.

Court decisions

Once the relocating parent gives proper written notice, the parent who is not moving can petition the court to prevent the children from relocating. If the court needs to make the final decision, it will take into consideration a number of factors regarding the children’s best interest, such as the following:

  • Whether relocation will negatively affect the relationship with the children and the other parent
  • Whether the move will improve the quality of life for the moving parent and/or children
  • Whether the move will allow parenting time orders to continue as originally planned
  • How moving, or not moving, will affect the development of the children on both an emotional and physical level
  • How moving will affect the children’s stability

If you are the parent moving with your children, whether for a new job, new relationship or simply a better life, a lawyer may help lay out all the details so the court and the other parent can understand how moving may be a positive thing for the children.