Can you move with the children after a Colorado divorce?
Your life will change in ways that you cannot predict following the end of your marriage. The parenting plan that you currently have may not properly address the changing needs of your family. For example, you will need to change the existing order dividing your parental rights and responsibilities if you want to move away from where you currently live.
Moving to a new neighborhood might open up new career opportunities, or reconnecting with old friends might leave you thinking about your family that lives out of state. There are many reasons why a divorced parent who shares parental rights and responsibilities with their ex might want to leave Colorado or move to the opposite side of the state.
When there are children involved and they would move with you, such life choices go from being a simple decision to a complex legal matter. Is it possible for you to relocate with the children as a parent who shares custody?
Your ex may support the move
If you have an amicable relationship with your ex or if there is a very compelling reason for you to move, such as a once-in-a-lifetime job opportunity, the other parent may support your decision and cooperate with you.
If they do, you can submit an uncontested modification request to the courts. However, if they are not cooperative, then you may have to litigate.
What happens in a contested move-away situation?
You have to provide both your ex and the courts with written notice of your intent to move before relocating. If your ex responds and asserts that they do not want you moving out of state or a significant distance from where they live, then you need to prepare for family court proceedings.
Just like in any custody matter, a judge will hear from both parents and then make a decision that they think will be in the best interests of the children. If you want to improve your chances of a successful relocation request, you need to focus on why the change would benefit the children rather than on your desires or wishes.
Employing the right approach, including attempting to cooperate with your ex and keeping the focus on the kids, will increase your chances of success when requesting a relocation-related modification of your current parenting arrangements.