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How Does Relocation Work in Florida?

How Does Relocation Work in Florida?

You may have many questions about what constitutes “relocation” according to the laws of Florida. Some of the common questions our firm receives are “Does the statute only applies when moving out of the state or county?”, “Do I need court permission to relocate?”, and “Does it have to be in writing?” Relocation is a common occurrence in Florida, as it is a very transient state where people are constantly moving in, out, and around for family or employment reasons. It is very important to understand the Florida Statute on Relocation to avoid the various issues that can arise if you move without following the statute – especially if you already have an agreement with the other parent or a court order regarding time-sharing.

What Is Relocation Under Florida’s Statute of Relocation 61.13001?

The Florida Statute for Relocation defines relocation as “a change in the location of the principal residence of a parent or other person from his or her principal place of residence at the time of the last order establishing or modifying time-sharing, or at the time of filing the pending action to establish or modify time-sharing. The change of location must be at least 50 miles from that residence, and for at least 60 consecutive days not including a temporary absence from the principal residence for purposes of vacation, education, or the provision of health care for the child.”

How Can I Relocate with My Child?

There are a couple of ways in which you can lawfully relocate with your child. The first would be the easiest way, which is that both parents agree for the one parent to relocate with the child. In this situation, you may still want to see an attorney to make sure that all legal matters are addressed, and that the agreement is in writing and binding.

This agreement should be filed with the court that ordered the current time-sharing arrangement so that you can avoid legal disputes and issues in the future. This method also protects you and your child from having to move back to the county of the original order.

The second and more common method is utilized when parents do not agree about the relocation. The parent who wishes to move must file a Petition to Relocate so that a judge can decide if the relocation is in the best interests of the child(ren). This method is extremely complex in a legal sense because the petition must be served, written, and address all the legal requirements that the statute mandates.

Relocation is a very challenging practice area of Florida family law. If you relocate without consent from the other parent or the court, or if it is not done in accordance with the statute, you may face legal troubles in the future. For example, the court may decide to hold you in contempt, order that you lose custody until you move back, or they may order a long-distance time-sharing arrangement where you spend less time with your child (usually holidays). That said, it is very important that you contact a legal professional to assist you with this difficult and complex venture.

Are you Preparing to Relocate?

Contact the family law attorneys at Powell, Jackman, Stevens & Ricciardi, P.A. if you are preparing to relocate within the state of Florida. Our legal team can review your existing custody order and help you pursue a reasonable modification that allows you to relocate while still upholding your child’s best interests.

Contact Powell, Jackman, Stevens & Ricciardi, (239) 970-6844 to discuss your legal options with experienced legal professionals.

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We do not represent tenants.

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