Can you move out of Colorado with the kids after your divorce?

by | Jul 21, 2021 | Divorce |

It often takes quite some time to rebuild your life after a divorce. You no longer have a spouse to rely on for household needs and financial support, and you may find yourself trying to stay away from places and experiences that remind you of your marriage.

Whether you have family in Idaho or a job offer in Texas, you may decide that leaving Colorado is the best way to move on with your life. However, if you share parental responsibilities and parenting time with your ex, moving isn’t always that simple.

The parenting plan approved in your divorce likely limits relocation. Restrictions usually apply if you intend to move out of the state or far enough away that the move will affect the children’s relationship with their other parent due to the distance. What do you need to do if you want to relocate with the children after a Colorado divorce?

You must provide your ex with advance notice in writing

Before you start packing, you will first have to talk with your ex about the issue. An informal conversation is not sufficient. You will have to send them written notice about your intent to move and the destination.

Your ex then has the option of agreeing to your relocation request or pushing back against it. If they agree, the two of you may need to negotiate a new way to split up custody, such as allowing the children to travel back to Colorado every year to spend the summer with the other parent.

If your ex doesn’t agree, then you will either need to change your plans or ask for a modification that allows you to relocate.

Any move should be in the best interests of the children

You know that you would feel better if you put some distance between you and your ex, but the same may not be true for your kids. In order to convince the courts that a major relocation is necessary, you have to have a reason for moving and show that you have considered the impact of your decision on the children.

For example, if you accept a new job in another state, you might show how the nearby school district has excellent programs that overlap with your child’s favorite subject. If you intend to move home to be closer to family, those other relationships could be a factor.

Just wanting a fresh start likely won’t be enough to convince the courts to rule against your ex and allow a significant relocation. Understanding when the courts will approve a relocation request can help you better handle the process of requesting permission to move with your children.