Relocation order family court applies to parties who wish to relocate with their children, and move somewhere else. Following a divorce or separation, if a parent wishes to move with the child, that parent may need a relocation order from family court.
Courts may grant relocation order in family court by considering the best interests of the child. Because this involves moving away from one parent, courts will consider whether it is ideal to give relocation order in family court to one parent.
This article aims to discuss relocation order family court including factors considered by family court, and the process to get relocation order in family court.
Relocation Order Family Court: Factors That The Court Considers
The Family Law Act (1975) states that the Court will ensure that the child can spend equal time, or a substantial amount of time with each parent.
Section 65DAA of the Family Law Act (1975) explains the processes that the Court follows to ensure that the child gets equal, or substantial amount of time with each parent.
Generally, parents have equal shared parental responsibility. However, based on each case, the Court can decide whether the child should spend equal time with each parent or not.
The Court considers the best interests of the child – as mentioned under Section 60CC of the Family Law Act – to make such decisions.
Primarily, this includes the benefit to the child of having a meaningful relationship with both his/her parents. Moreover, it also includes the need to protect the child from all kinds of harm including harm caused from physical or psychological abuse, or neglect.
There are secondary considerations such as the child’s opinions and views, the nature of their relationship with each parent etc.
Types Of Relocation Orders From Family Court
The types of orders the Court makes will differ from case to case. Largely, there are 4 combinations or types of relocation order in family court. These include:
- Permitting the child to relocate with the parent seeking the relocation order from family court, and subsequently making orders about the child spending time with the other parent.
- Letting the child live with the non-relocating parent, and making orders allowing the child to spend time and communicate with the parent who sought relocation orders.
- Ordering the non-relocating parent to move to the same venue so as to ensure that the child spends equal time with both parents, or lives with one parent and spends substantial amount of time with the other parent.
- Disallowing relocation, and ordering that the child live in the current location with the parent who sought relocation, with the same parenting agreements in place.
Furthermore, the type of court orders will differ based on the individual circumstances of the case. It is highly likely that the other parent will contest the application to relocation, as it would mean that they get less time with the child.
Therefore, such matters must be taken seriously and you must get appropriate legal advice from family law solicitors.
Should You And Your Ex-Spouse Reach An Agreement?
Before approaching family courts, it is always necessary for each party to consider making agreements with the other party. When discussing relocation, the party must consider talking to their former spouse, and come up with mutual agreements.
It is important for each party to reach try and make future parenting arrangements. Where this is not possible, the parties will need to approach family courts.
However, each party must make a genuine attempt to reach mutual agreements. It is understandably difficult to make future arrangements when considering relocation. This is because one parent will most definitely lose some amount of time that he/she could spend with their child.
But above all, each party must consider the best interests of the child. Therefore, it is important to make future arrangements amicably wherever possible.
International Or Overseas Relocation
Parents who are planning to relocate with the children overseas must prepare a reasonable application for the family court. The court will consider many factors in such cases. The parent looking to relocate should consider the following questions in order to prepare the application:
- Where will the child study?
- What will your income be?
- Where will your work?
- What will your living expenses be?
- Where will you live?
- Does the place offer any extra-curricular activities for that child to partake in?
- Has the child lived there before?
- Does the child have any friends or relatives in that place?
- How will the child maintain communication and relationship with his/her other parent?
The considerations for parents looking to move interstate with the child/ren are largely similar to that of overseas relocation. The parent seeking relocation order from family court must consider the above-mentioned questions when preparing their court application.
As stated above, parents must approach courts only if they are unable to reach mutual agreements with their former spouse. This is an important prerequisite in every parenting and family law matter, and the courts must be satisfied that the parties are unable tor each mutual or amicable agreements.
In addition to the questions mentioned above, the relocating parent can also consider other questions like:
- What are the costs of relocating?
- How will the child travel to and fro to meet the other parent?
- Where will the child avail necessary health services?
- Why is the parent wishing to relocate with the child?
- What kinds of parenting arrangements will be in place?
Legal Advice For Parenting Issues
Family law is complex. Each case is different because individual circumstance of each family differs greatly. Parties to a family law matter need to consider a variety of things before approaching courts.
Therefore, it is important to seek legal advice from experienced family lawyers. Each party can make well-informed decisions after seeking advice from professionals like family law solicitors.
JB Solicitors offers fixed-fees for many of its family law services. For more information on any topic, please do not hesitate to reach out to us today.
Contact us for your legal needs.