Zachary A. VanDyke, PA
Panama City Attorney
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What factors are considered in parental relocation cases?

Parents in Florida, even if they are no longer in a relationship, want to retain a meaningful relationship with their child. However, one's life circumstances may change, leading one parent to desire to move away, which could affect theircurrent parenting plan. If one parent wants to relocate with the child and the other parent contests it, the court will be responsible for deciding whether or not to approve the relocation. When doing so, the following factors will be considered.

The court will consider the nature and quality of the child's relationship with both the parent requesting the relocation and the parent contesting it, along with the extent of each parent's relationship with the child. The child's age and developmental stage will also be considered, as will the effect the move will have on the child's development. The child's preference may also be considered.

How feasible it will be to preserve the child's relationship with the parent contesting the relocation will be if a modified parenting plan is established. This includes considering the logistics of such arrangements, as well as the financial impact of such arrangements. The court will also consider whether the modified plan will allow the child to have a meaningful relationship with the parent contesting the relocation. Another factor that the court may take into consideration is whether the move will provide the child with a better quality of life.

Why one parent wants to relocate and why the other parent contests it will also be considered, as will each parent's employment and financial circumstances. The parent seeking relocation must do so in good faith, and the parent contesting the relocation must have fulfilled his or her child support obligations. Another consideration is the career opportunities that the relocation would make available to the parent contesting the relocation. If there is a history of domestic abuse or substance abuse will also be considered. Finally, any additional factors that have an effect on the child's best interests will be considered.

There is a lot that goes into determining whether a relocation should be approved or denied. No matter whether a parent is seeking to move with their child or is contesting such a move, having legal advice can ensure that not only are the parent's rights protected but also that decisions are made that are in the best interests of the child.

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Zachary A. Vandyke, P.A.
502 Harmon Ave
Panama City, FL 32401

Phone: 850-851-0864
Fax: 850-215-6459
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