The mother of my children decided to move more than 60 miles away. I was served papers on the move and I would like to file a Status Quo but my lawyer is out of town. Do I have a specific time frame to file a Status Quo?
I do not think it is in the best interest of our son to move especially without a new parenting plan in place. I would also like to petition the move. Any insight on this topic would be greatly appreciated
You can't file a post-judgment status quo order immediately, the way you can with a pre-judgment Temporary Protective Order of Restraint (which is sometimes, wrongly, called a "status quo order" by laypeople and lawyers alike). To get a status quo order once a judgment has already been entered, you must give the opposing party 3 days' advance notice of your intention to appear at ex parte or to seek the order. They have the opportunity to appear and object. It's good that you have a lawyer representing you already - you should direct your questions to them - but if they aren't available for an extended period, you can ask another attorney to handle this part until they return. By now, on a Friday afternoon, it would be surprising if much could be done, aside from giving notice of the intent to file, until next week.
Regardless, you can file a motion to modify custody based on the substantial change in circumstances represented by the other parent's move. You should do this as soon as possible, so that the children's new location does not become "the new normal," but there is no specific timeframe required. The legal standard remains what is in the best interests of the children, so whether you can get a change of legal and primary physical custody based on this really depends on a lot of things we don't know here: how often you saw your children prior to the move, the history between you, and so on. Rather than posting these details here - this is not a confidential forum, and what we think doesn't affect your case - you should discuss this with your attorney as soon as you can.
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Unless the prior Judgment dealing with custody and parenting time specifies what the notice procedure is if one parent wants to move, and that specific rule states you have to file an objection within a limited amount of time, I don't think there is any deadline to file your objection. You obviously want to file before the move takes place as a practical matter, and preferably as soon as possible. Call your lawyers office and let someone know what is going on. Even when Lawyers are on vacation they typically check their messages unless they are in a remote location where that isn't possible. Many lawyers will leave instructions with their staff as to who to refer clients to during their absence. So you should at least be able to figure out what if any deadlines you have to file something. If you absolutely can't get a message to your lawyer, take your paperwork that discusses your current custody situation and parenting plan to another lawyer, and make sure that you aren't missing any deadlines.
The comments by this author to questions posted on Avvo are designed to foster a general understanding of what might be the law governing the area of the legal problem stated and suggest what might be the approach to finding a legal solution. Under no circumstances is this author acting as the attorney for the party who posted the question or as the attorney for subsequent readers to the question or response and no attorney client relationship is being formed. This attorney's comments are not intended to be a substitute for getting legal advice from a licensed attorney. A reader of this author's comments should never act on the information provided in these comments as though these comments were legal advice and should always seek legal advice in a personal consultation with an attorney in their jurisdiction before taking action. The information provided here is not intended to cover every situation with similar facts. Please remember that the law varies between states and other countries and is always changing through actions of the courts and the Legislature.
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