Family Matters
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Anyone familiar with divorce/custody issues? Not me.

A good friend of mine is separating. His wife met someone else and wants to take their daughter and move several states away. Can she do this that easily?

He's a great dad; his daughter is truly "daddy's little girl". Sad  He makes more money, all of their family/friends are here. I know years ago the woman almost always got the children, but is it still the same?

This is all new, so I'm just looking to help support him now. Thank you!

Re: Anyone familiar with divorce/custody issues? Not me.

  • No she cannot. THere has to be a custody hearing.

    Sometimes the father gets custody, sometimes it's half each.

  • Please tell your friend to consult an attorney. He has rights here too, but he needs to be aware of what they are and how to prevent this from happening to him.
  • He absolutely can stop her.  Judges no longer automatically side with the mother.  I've heard of joint custody cases where if one parent moved out of the designated area they automatically gave up custody and only get visitation.  I've also heard of the parent with sole custody having to turn the child over to the other parent because they moved out of the area. He needs to contact a lawyer immediately. 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • Good, aggressive lawyer.  STAT

    And if he finds a lawyer who tells him he hasn't got a penguin's chance in hell of getting primary custody or at least some seriously substantial parenting time, tell him to find another lawyer.

  • imageTarponMonoxide:

    No she cannot. THere has to be a custody hearing.

    Sometimes the father gets custody, sometimes it's half each.

     

     

    Tell your friend to consult an attorney and DON"T give her advice off a message board because it's frequently incorrect.

  • He needs to get a court date scheduled for custody, or child support where the custody of the child will be discussed scheduled ASAP. I have heard that once the preceedings are scheduled, the other parent can only move within a certain distance, but I don't know if that is the same for everywhere or if its even the case. If he cannot afford a lawyer, which would be the best approach, he needs to get a custody or child support hearing schedule soon, you don't have to have a lawyer for that, and from what I hear, the normal is joint custody, unless one parent can prove the other is unfit, or the other parent doesn't want joint custody. If they cannot agree upon custody, then thats where the lawyers would need to be contacted.
  • He needs to get his head out of the sand and admit that his marriage is over.

    Then he needs to contact a lawyer and file for divorce in the state they are living in.

    At the same time, he needs to file a temporary / emergency custody order that prevents either spouse from taking the child out of state.

    He needs to do this RIGHT AWAY.  It is actually sometimes easier to move a child out of state, THEN file for divorce in your "new home state" and receive custody then it is to file (or have your partner file) for divorce in your state and move the child after.

    Even if he doesn't get custody, he can prevent his SO from moving out of state with the child. 

    But he needs to lawyer up - and fast!

    image "Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self esteem, first make sure you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.
  • Tell him to get a lawyer asap!  

    I know someone who tried to move away with their kids and was stopped because the judge filed and order that she couldn't move with the kids more than 30 miles away.  He needs to do it as soon as possible--before she is already gone.

  • You've been good advice, but you can also post this on the Blended Family board,
  • Thanks, ladies. I see him Saturday, and will check in and see where he's at. This seems to have happened pretty quickly, so who knows if she'll do what she says she's going to.
  • imageAim&Rich:
    Thanks, ladies. I see him Saturday, and will check in and see where he's at. This seems to have happened pretty quickly, so who knows if she'll do what she says she's going to.
    If this is a good friend you are worried about, I would not wait until Saturday. I would call him today and tell him that he needs to immediately see a lawyer if he has done so already.
  • imagecasmgn:
    imageAim&Rich:
    Thanks, ladies. I see him Saturday, and will check in and see where he's at. This seems to have happened pretty quickly, so who knows if she'll do what she says she's going to.
    If this is a good friend you are worried about, I would not wait until Saturday. I would call him today and tell him that he needs to immediately see a lawyer if he has done so already.
    Ditto. He could and should be sitting down with a lawyer this week.
  • imageootmother2:
    imageTarponMonoxide:

    No she cannot. THere has to be a custody hearing.

    Sometimes the father gets custody, sometimes it's half each.

     

     

    Tell your friend to consult an attorney and DON"T give her advice off a message board because it's frequently incorrect.

     

    This is a very good point.  A lot of the laws and decisions can vary from state to state.  Call your friend immediately and tell him to get a lawyer. 

  • All I can say is custody battles suck big time. My parents separated when I was 8 and finalized the divorce when I was ten because they spent so long fighting over custody. The state FL gave my mom custody no matter what my dad did. My dad made way more money than my mom and was in my opinion the way better parent of the two and offered me and my brother a better life but the state of FL didn't even give him a chance so it depends on the state. Tell him to talk to a lawyer,because its gonna get ugly. Good luck 
    ?I always like to look on the optimistic side of life, but I am realistic enough to know that life is a complex matter.? ~Walt Disney
  • I worked for a child support agency, but you need to tell your friend to consult an attorney or get in touch with the local child support agency. Every state is different with their child support/custody and visitation laws. Every case is different, so there is not a whole lot you can get from a message board. Sometimes one parent is allowed to remove the child from the state, it depends on the court order, so you should not be telling him that she can't do that, because she may be allowed to. The best thing for him to do is to seek legal assistance. Many counties have free family law facilitators who can assist if he doesn't have the means to hire and attorney. Retainers can be very pricey.
  • imageFMIL&MOB:
    You've been good advice, but you can also post this on the Blended Family board,

    Good advice - I would post this on Blended Families, which is on The Bump.

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  • That could be kidnapping. Lawyer intervention immediately!
  • imagehellokittie:
    He needs to get a court date scheduled for custody, or child support where the custody of the child will be discussed scheduled ASAP. I have heard that once the preceedings are scheduled, the other parent can only move within a certain distance, but I don't know if that is the same for everywhere or if its even the case. If he cannot afford a lawyer, which would be the best approach, he needs to get a custody or child support hearing schedule soon, you don't have to have a lawyer for that, and from what I hear, the normal is joint custody, unless one parent can prove the other is unfit, or the other parent doesn't want joint custody. If they cannot agree upon custody, then thats where the lawyers would need to be contacted.

     Bingo. If there is no pending court proceeding, then the mother actually CAN just take the child and move to a different state. This happened with my FI and his ex-wife. We live in the state of Iowa and got an old judge who was gung-ho about children being with the mother (same as the judge we would've gotten if we fought it. We just had a crappy month to go to court), so she won out, but I think that's just an Iowa problem. A lot of states now are very fair about the children going with the father just as much as the mother.

    He needs to get a lawyer IMMEDIATELY and get a petition to the court for custody so she cannot move the child. Good luck to him!

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