In many ways life after a divorce is a chance to set the reset button on your life, but if you have kids in tow things can get a bit complicated. Many divorce agreements set geographical parameters on where a custodial parent can live. The idea is that it is most beneficial for kids to have regular input from both of their parents. While this is often true, each individual parent also needs to be able to move their own lives forward, and often opportunities present themselves outside the original parameters set by the court.
Setting Up Your Living Options
If you are still in the process of getting a divorce, geographical parameters are usually set with the best interests of the kids in mind. Usually, long distance parenting isn't recommended, but it can be necessary. If it is necessary, waiting until kids are a little older can be a better option. Experts recommend waiting until a child is at least 2-3 years old before attempting a long distance relationship, because the child will not have the communication skills to properly work with communication tools, such as the telephone, or video chat until they are that age. Consider things such as where job opportunities are, and where you are most apt to find an emotional support network and discuss them with your family law attorney.
When Life Leads You to Relocate
In many cases staying in a limited geographical area might seem fine at first when you are in the middle of getting your divorce, but afterward life happens. Maybe you are offered a job that is either more money or just a better fit for you that happens to be out of your set parameters. You also may find yourself wanting to move for the sake of a new relationship. If either of these situations arises, your motives might be called into question, and you may once again need a family law attorney to help you prove that your life decisions are being made with your child's best interest in mind, as well as your own.
This may mean proving that moving will increase the child's quality of life. However, making more money is not enough. Chances are, you will be asked to show that the actual move will have a minimal effect on the child, and that you aren't purposely moving in order to create more physical distance between your child and their other parent. Talking to a family law attorney can help you form your strategy as you negotiate a new parenting plan that works in the best way possible for everyone concerned.