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Can I relocate with son ? No ones gone to court it's been 2 years since split sons 6 ? I've always been primary caretaker ?

Moreno Valley, CA |

Currently my son's father and I have no custody orders or been to court for anything. We lived together as a family for 4.5 years, our son is now 6. I left approx. 2 years ago and lived alone with son in new place for about a year going to school. Now living with parents till completion. I would like to move with my son. I have always been the primary caregiver even while in the relationship and especially more so now after I left. Ex never paid much for financial care of son, I left, handled it between 2 of us. Transferring soon need to know can I move out of state ? How far can I move in current state ? Can I move now with no orders in effect of any kind ? Will that hurt or help case ? I want kid in better overall environment cross the board, its not California anymore. What do I do ?

What is the best possible way to go about this ? I am reasonable, logical person and do not want to create a huge nasty mess with any of this. I have tried my best to handle the separation like adults with the kiddos best interest in mind. But I do think a move down the line in near future is his best interest for many reasons. Don't care about support, will pay travel costs. If I were to plan this for the best possible outcome what steps should I take now ? I do not want to "skip" town. I want to do this right. Briefly just read art. here that says when order is effect I have to ask permission to change sons school district ? I live in Moreno Valley, CA I absolutely am not living the next 12 years in this area ? If I cannot leave state which I could understand, can I at least move to central or northern California without being a major pain in the ass if his dad says no ? What's the price tag for attorney's start to finish for primary/legal cases in my area ?

Attorney Answers 5


  1. With no orders, you can move -- subject to him coming after the kids and asking the California court to order return the children.

    In no way am I offering you legal advice, and in no way has my comment created an attorney-client relationship. You are not to rely upon my note above in any way, but insted need to sit down with counsel and share all relevant facts before receiving fully-informed legal advice. If you want to be completely sure of your rights, you must sit down with an experienced criminal defense attorney to be fully aware of your rights.


  2. If you file legal paperwork in California, that creates automatic temporary restraining orders (ATROS) preventing any move of the child until a judge gives permission. Since you state no legal paperwork has been filed with the court, it sounds like there are no court orders preventing you from moving, especially with the fact pattern that you listed. If you move, and he files legal paperwork in California, you may have to litigate the issue in California and deal with custody and visitation issues in California. You should consult with a family law attorney before making any move for a complete analysis of your situation.

    This communication does not create an attorney-client relationship. This means that I am not your lawyer and I will not appear in court simply by posting on this site. If you would like me to represent you, you must call my office, sign a written fee agreement and pay a legal fee, assuming I do not have a conflict of interest and you are in Southern California. If I respond to your question and you have follow up questions by posting on this site, I may or may not reply. This information should not be construed as legal advice. I am offering my opinion. Each person's case is unique, and that's why you should contact a lawyer over the phone for a consultation for your situation. That's why you should not rely on any response that an attorney posts on this site. I am licensed in California. I am not licensed in another state or country. I do not practice law outside of California.


  3. You can with no court orders. I would not advise it though. The father will file for a divorce and parenting time with the CA courts as soon as you do and CA will have jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act.

    The information provided in this answer does not create an attorney-client relationship and is not considered to be legal advice. Mr. Leroi answers questions on Avvo because he strongly believes in public service from his years as a judge, magistrate, and prosecutor. If you need to ask any follow up questions because my answer did not fully address your question, feel free to call Chris or post an additional question. Thank you.


  4. it is not clear from the facts whether you and your ex were married, and if so, if any paperwork was filed with any court. In other words, if you did file for divorce in any court, then that court will retain jurisdiction over your child until he turns 18 (or when he graduates high school). If this is the case, then you must discuss this move with your ex, and if he agrees, you can file a stipulation or agreement of some kind with the court. If he disagrees, you can file an RFO requesting a "move away" order. If, however, there is no court involvement and has not been any court involvement, then you should at the very least discuss your intentions with your ex, and then the proverbial ball will be in his court as to what he would do next. If you have an amicable relationship and present the issue as being in the best interests of your child (which is the ONLY issue the court would consider), you should be able to move with your son subject to whatever conditions/agreements you make with your ex. Consulting a family law attorney is a good idea just to give you peace of mind. Most attorneys charge hourly, but most give free initial consultations, and some will even do "limited scope" retainers to only deal with one issue of your case. Hope this helps. Good luck.


  5. As a general observation, you should consult with an attorney regarding the facts of your case.

    This is not legal advice. This response is provided for general information only, as a public service. It is not to be relied upon as legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship; nor is it an attempt to create an attorney/client relationship. Consult with local counsel in your jurisdiction about the specifics of your case, which is the only way to gain true meaningful legal guidance and/or representation.

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