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Heather Jones

It’s not unusual for former partners or spouses to have to deal with issue of relocation. Whether the move is for work, family related or you just want to get away from Wisconsin winters, you need to make sure that you take the appropriate legal steps when you want to relocate after a divorce in Wisconsin. Here are ten things to know about moving with minor children in Wisconsin.  

1-It’s not just for people who are divorced!

Anytime there is a custody order in place and the other parent has any period of physical placement with the child you need to file a petition for relocation. The other parent is allowed to object to your relocation, regardless of if the parents were ever married. Most people tend to think that there is only an issue if you are moving after divorce but that is not the case at all.  

2-How far can a parent with custody move in Wisconsin?

If you want to move 100 miles or more away you have to get the courts permission. So even if you remain within the state of Wisconsin, the court will require you to seek permission to relocate, with the understanding the entire family will be affected by the relocation.  

3-It’s not just for permanent relocation

If you are planning to remove the child from the primary physical residence for over 90 days, you will need to seek the court’s permission and give the other parent the opportunity to object. An example might be that your job is sending you to Asia for four months and you plan to take your child with you, the other parent can object to both the duration of the removal and the country you plan to be staying in.

4-You will be expected to file a proposed plan with the court

You are expected to come up with a proposed relocation plan to file with the court. A few of things that a proposed relocation plan must include is a plan for visitation with the non-custodial parent including method of transportation of the child and the allocation of travel costs between parents.

5-The other parent can object

People often wonder if the child’s mother or father can stop them from moving after divorce. The other parent has the right to object to any proposed relocation for good reason and if the parties cannot agree to the relocation the court often sends the parties to mediation to try and work something out.

6-Don’t wait to ask for relocation

It is always better to start the process sooner rather than later. You will provide the court with your proposed date of relocation and an initial hearing will take place within 30 days of the filing. The actual process could take much longer depending on what the respective parties want.  

The deadline to file for relocation is 60 days before the move if you already live 100 miles or more apart.  

7-Be ready to go to mediation

If the other parent contests the relocation or the terms of the proposed relocation plan be ready to attend court ordered mediation. Mediation is a process where the parents sit down with a mediator to see if they can come to an agreement about the issues.  

8-Be ready to compromise

Be prepared to show some flexibility, you might not get everything you want exactly how you envision it. A good example might be that the court allows you to relocate out of state with the child but that means the other parent gets the child for summers and most major holidays.  

9- The best interests of the child

The umbrella standard courts impose when considering an order regarding a child is what is in the best interests of the child. The priority of the child’s safety, health and well-being cannot be overemphasized but the court will also take into consideration the child’s right to have a meaningful relationship with both parents, which means spending adequate time with both of them.  

10-Consult with a Wisconsin family law attorney before post-divorce relocation with your child

If you are considering relocation with a minor child after divorce or custody order, we can assist you . Please feel free to give us a call to schedule a consultation about your plans for relocation.  

Disclaimer: The information provided on this blog is intended for general informational purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice on any subject matter. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Each individual's legal needs are unique, and these materials may not be applicable to your legal situation. Always seek the advice of a competent attorney with any questions you may have regarding a legal issue. Do not disregard professional legal advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this blog.

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