I've been divorced for some time now and my ex and I have a child together and a subsequent parenting plan. I'm unclear on how the laws apply to the non-custodial parent. Since I am the custodial parent, I understand that I have to notify him in writing prior to a move to allow him time to object to the move. However since he moved does he NOT have to notify me? I'm concerned because I don't know where they are living other than somewhere out of state. Do I have any legal pathways to take against him for failing to notify me? Ive been doing some research and it almost seems like it would be considered custodial interference according to RCW 9A.40.060. Am I correct? If so what can I do? Do I have the rights to file for full custody?
I really appreciate all of your help in advance.
Family Law Attorney
Take a look at my AVVO Legal Guide on Interstate Child Custody. You say that you are the custodial parent. If so, how has your ex moved with the child? You should call for a free 1/2 hour consultation.
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Divorce / Separation Lawyer
As to the custodial interference, the question is whether the time that he has with your child is his time under the exisiting parenting plan. I assume that there is no provision restricting him from taking the child our of state. If not, it would be hard to say that he has interfered with your residential time when the child is suppose to be with him.
It appears that you would benefit by adding provisions to your parenting plan as to maintaining communications, keeping the other parent notified of locations, etc.
Besides the relocation statutes, the modification section of the parenting statutes provide for changes in the residential provisions of the parenting plan when the non-custodial parent moves. See RCW 26.09.260(5). This would appear to be a real priority.
There needs to be more information as to the basis of a change in full custiody. My office provides a 30 minute free telephone conference if you wish to call.
LEGAL DISCLAIMER Mr. Pierce is licensed to practice law in Washing with an office in Seattle and services clients in all parts of Washington. He can be reached at 206-587-3757 or at the email address at piercefamilylaw.com Mr. Pierce is ethically required to state that the response herein is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/ client relationship. Also, there are no recognized legal specialties under Washington law. This response is only in the form of legal education and is intended to only provide general information about the matter within the question. Oftentimes the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that if known could significantly change the reply or make such reply unsuitable. Mr. Pierce strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney in their state in order to ensure proper advice is received.