Can mother leave state with children?
Mike: Yes. I have a child custody question about – the ex-wife is looking to move out of the state--
Attorney Tom Olsen: Alright.
Mike: - and we have at that point, my son will have a year left with school. One, what’s the issue here? What’s the rule based on that and then two, who’s going to have to be responsible or how the split is as far as the finances are – the rotations?
Attorney Tom Olsen: Mike, the law is very clear these days that she will not be allowed to move out of state without first getting a court order allowing her to do so. If, and of course, you’re going to have an opportunity to object to that, if your ex-wife were to say, “You know, I’ve got a new job” or “I’m now engaged to a man and he has to move to another state,” those are good reasons and the judge might very well let her go. If she says, “You know judge, I just want to change and change my lifestyle,” well, that’s not going to be a good enough reason to go, Mike. Now, once, if the judge says yes, she can go with your child or now, you’ve got to address these other issues about changing visitation and who pays for transportation back and forth for the rest of your visitation period.
Mike: Got you.
Attorney Tom Olsen: Now Mike, the good news is Paul Newnum, he’s my Family Law Divorce Attorney, Paul is at my office right now. You can hang up with me and call Paul and get more information at 407-423-5561. Mike, did I answer your question for you?
Mike: Yes, that works. So actually, one little thing is, does the judge take into consideration the will of my son?
Attorney Tom Olsen: Your son, I think, it’s telling me like 17 years old, right?
Attorney Tom Olsen: Okay. So, that is a case by case, judge by judge decision. Some judges say, “I will never take testimony from children.” Some judges say, “I will take testimony once they’re mature enough and I believe that they’d know in their heart what they want to do.” So, I would say there’s a good chance that the judge would listen to your 17 year old and if the 17 year old wants to stay in Orlando with you, that might very well be possible.