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How to get custody of my child who lives out of state.

Chandler, AZ |

She lives with her mother in MA. I live in AZ.

Her mother will not allow her to come see me, because of my new wife and our child. My daughter in an unstable environment. She is crying every time I call, always in time out, and getting into trouble at school. She does not have any consistency where she is now. They both live with her mom's parents, and she does not even have a room to herself.

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Attorney answers 2


You question raises issues concerning the jurisdiction of Arizona courts to handle this matter. How long have the kids been in MA? Where were they born? You can file a motion to seek changes in the Custody and Parenting Time of the children, however this needs to be done in the proper court.
Once filed, the Court will examine factors including the best interests of the child in making their determination. You should seek the assistance of a local attorney to determine if your case can be brought before an Arizona court, and then to help you in litigating your case. Most attorneys offer a free consultation during which they should quirky be able to determine if Arizona courts will even have jurisdiction.


I agree with much of what the other attorney mentioned. However, another big question is, "where were your initial child custody orders entered?" If in AZ, then AZ retains continuing and exclusive jurisdiction. There is no guarantee that AZ won't release jurisdiction in the future, but that may be one way to get the matter heard quickly. Jurisdiction issues are complicated and fact-intensive. I would highly recommend speaking to an attorney.

Ms. Rolfe is licensed to practice law in Arizona. This response is not legal advice and does not create an attorney/client relationship. This response is in the form of legal education and is intended to provide general information about the matter within the question. Often, the question does not include significant and important facts and timelines that, if known, could significantly change the reply. Ms. Rolfe strongly advises the questioner to confer with an attorney to make sure he or she gets all relevant information to make informed decisions about the subject matter.

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