Which parent must drive the child back and forth for visitation?


Which parent must drive the child back and forth for visitation? Do I have to drive my child to visit with his father? Watch as Attorneys Tom Olsen and Paul Newnum answer these questions and more!


Brad: Well, yes, I have a question. I’m going through – I don’t like to call it custody but I’m very involved in my son’s life and I’m there for him. I pretty much equal time during the week. But we are going to be looking at doing mediation for parental plan as well as child support. Bit of a background – my son’s mother is very vindictive; she’s looking for any opportunity to using as collateral against me. And it’s very harmful to me and my relationship with him and it’s made it very tough. My question though right now is, I am looking to be moving out of the Altamonte area, he’s in Stanford. Her father has leased a car for her and her big complaint has always been she cannot drive to bring him to me when it’s outside a certain distance because the mileage on the car. Now being 50, 50 is there a specific mile range that I can’t live outside of, I’m – 

Attorney Tom Olsen: So, Brad that is a fascinating question. So I’m going to turn it over to Paul. So, Paul, we hear about parents who are sharing custody with the children but I never talked about or hear about how they get the child back and forth to each other.

Attorney Paul Newnum: Okay, there are a number of ways to get the child back and forth to each other. Often times the pick-up is done by the person who is starting the time sharing period. So if dad’s starting his time sharing period, he goes to mom’s house, the kids come out of the house, get into dad’s car. They go to dad’s house when that time runs out, mom either goes to school to pick them up when school is out or goes to dad’s house to pick them up. Sometimes parties and parents choose a halfway point, a public place like in a McDonald’s parking lot, a gas station located at the corner of I4 and state road 44. 

Part of Brad’s question though is, how far can he move, how far can a parent move from where they are at the time of the divorce. And statute provides the parent can’t move more than 50 miles, in a 50 mile radius beyond where they were before. Without written permission of the other parent or written order of the court. And the relocation statute’s very strict statute that has to be followed to the latter in order to get the case either to trial or to resolution through mediation. So this is a complicated process, both before your file the lawsuit to try to make that move or after. But Brad, I don’t hear Brad moving that far. It can create really bad practical problems if you move 35 miles apart. Because it creates a whole set of issues including the transportation issue that Brad’s talking about.

Attorney Tom Olsen: All right, so I get the part about, if it’s Brad’s turn to have the children, that Brad drives to mom’s house and gets the kids and when they are done mom drives and gets the kids back from Brad. Will that be literally being covered in the separation agreement?

Attorney Paul Newnum: Absolutely. Often times those pick-ups and drop-offs occur for example if weekend visitation is Friday night over night until Monday morning, the parent returning kids does return the kids to the home. The parent returns the kid to the school or if it’s summer time they return the kids to the parent at say 9:00, 10:00 AM.

Attorney Tom Olsen: Okay, so we know that right now Brad Lives 10 miles away from mom. If Brad were to move a little bit further now, he’s 20 miles away from mom. Will mom still have an obligation to come and get the kids at the end of Brad’s visitation?

Attorney Paul Newnum: The parents will have an obligation, it’s a mutual obligation. The parents will have an obligation to make sure that they make appropriate arrangement to ensure the transportation of the children. How’s that’s done, can be done by mutual agreement or by an order of the court.