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SoloLawyer
SoloLawyer, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2949
Experience:  Licensed Missisippi Attorney; Criminal Law, Family Law, Personal Injury, and Civil Defense
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My husband and I have been married for nearly 2 years. It

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My husband and I have been married for nearly 2 years. It is a second marriage for both of us and we each have children from previous marriages. Because we did not want to move our children, we have maintained two homes-- his in PA where his kids are, mine in NJ where my kids are. And we have commuted to each other's homes. We have finally reached a point where we can no longer afford to maintain two homes, and have decided that he will move to NJ. Because the distance to his kids wil be approximately 100 miles, his current custodial schedule will need to be changed. (he is the non-custodial parent and pays child support) His current schedule entails his having his 3 children every Wednesday night from 6pm to 7am the next morning, and every other weekend from Friday at 6pm until Sunday at 8pm. In terms of percentages, he has them about 23% of the time. By living 2 hours away, he will be unable to maintain the Wednesday night stay over, but plans to take them to dinner and return them home to their mother. Weekends will be a bit trickier. While there is ample space in the NJ house to accommodate them every other weekend, his two oldest kids are 16 and nearly 18. Due to work and social commitments, they may be unwilling and/or unable to come to NJ. That said, we calculate the amount of time he will be with his kids under his new arrangement to be between 8-16%. He is currently paying $1500 per month in child support. He has an extremely contentious relationship with his ex, and we anticipate that she will throw up roadblocks to his moving away. We have not informed her or the kids yet, but hope to do so in the next 10 days, so that he can move by October 1, and avoid having to pay rent for October. So, I have several questions... One, can she prevent him from moving? Two, will the change to custodial schedule cause him to have to pay more support, and if so, how much? Does it make any difference that the children are welcome, and he is willing and able to provide transportation to them to get to NJ, but they'll CHOOSE not to, and therefore have to stay at home in PA with their mother? Three, his decree was a mediated agreement, and stipulates that if anything needs to be amended, they must go back to mediation. That being the case, considering how quickly we want to make this move, can he move while mediation is pending or ongoing? Or would that risk further legal action? Thank you for your help.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  SoloLawyer replied 2 years ago.

SoloLawyer :

Hello - Thank you for contacting JustAnswer. My name is Michael; I look forward to helping you with your family law problem today.


 

SoloLawyer :

I'm sorry to hear about your situation. I'll answer each of your questions separately and hopefully we'll figure this out together. :)


 

SoloLawyer :

1. He is the non-custodial parent, which means he can move if he wants to - she can not stop him. This may affect him, however, because he is the one moving away from the children.


 

SoloLawyer :

2. The custodial parent can modify child support based on a material change in circumstances. If his move changes the visitation arrangement and causes her to be spending significantly more money taking care of the children, she may be able to modify the child support order upwards.


 

SoloLawyer :

3. If the children are ordered to be with him at a certain time per Order, they don't have the right to choose whether they go or not. However, if they refuse to go, that will not affect him poorly.


 

SoloLawyer :

4. He can move before mediation starts. He is the non-custodial parent and nothing prevents him from moving. However, once he does move, she will most certainly modify the arrangement and go back to mediation, which will then start the process that he will have to attend.


 

Customer:

Ok... Under item 1.... how do you mean, "it may affect him?" In what way?


under item 2... what is considered to be "significantly more money" that she would be spending? I realize this must be a gray area, but we are trying to get some sort of ballpark


 


 

Customer:

Also, how is he required to notify her? I'm reading all sorts of things.... that it has to be done by certified mail, that he has to send a proposed revised custody arrangement along with a counter-affidavit, which she could in turn object to and take him to court, etc., etc. Very confusing!


 

SoloLawyer :

Thanks for responses.


 

SoloLawyer :

What I mean by "it may affect" him I explained in the other numbers. I meant she will have cause to modify the agreement and ask for more money, since he is the one leaving the children.


 

SoloLawyer :

2. There is no way for me to tell you the amount of money. The law calls it a "material change in circumstances". Honestly, just him moving will be a material change and will be enough to modify the agreement. Whether the child support figure itself will change is really hard to say without knowing the situation more intimately. His local attorney should be able to tell him.


 

SoloLawyer :

I'm not sure what you mean by notify her. He is not the one filing for a modification, it would be here. She will have to notify him.


 

Customer:

Oh, I've read that the parent seeking to relocate must provide notification during a certain time frame to the custodial parent of his intent to move.... and I've read various ways in which it must be provided.


 

SoloLawyer :

Okay, you mean notify based on his intent to move.


 

SoloLawyer :

I was confused for a moment.


 

Customer:

yes, that's correct.... sorry, I'm thinking a million miles an hour.

SoloLawyer :

Okay. Since the children don't live with him, technically relocation laws don't apply to him. However, since he has visitation and wants to continue visitation, it may be in his best interest to proactively notify the court and request a modification based on his intent to move. This will show the court that he is considering the best interests of the child.


 

Customer:

Ok... thank you. His mediator said that he should be in touch with the Domestic Relations office (this is PA, it may be named different things elsewhere....) She said he should "file for custody." I assume that means file for a CHANGE in custody.... is this what you are referring to?

SoloLawyer :

Yes, that's what I mean. He may need to file for a change in the visitation schedule to be proactive.


 

SoloLawyer :

He really needs to have counsel of a local attorney before he moves or makes any decisions.


 

Customer:

Understood. We are doing that next week, but are trying to wrap our heads around this whole issue. Thank you for your help.

SoloLawyer :

No problem. Can I schedule a follow up with you?


 

SoloLawyer :

I'd like to see what has occurred after about 3 weeks or so


 

Customer:

Oh, yes... but would there be an additional charge?

SoloLawyer :

Well it depends. I'll just schedule a follow up and if there are any other questions you have then, you can choose to ask them or not. :)


 

SoloLawyer :

So no, no other charge if you don't want there to be!


 

SoloLawyer :

If I can answer anything further, let me know. Remember, I'm here to help and your satisfaction is guaranteed. If you don't have any questions and you valued my time, I'd ask you to consider rating me positively.

Take care,

Michael


 

Customer:

Sounds good!

SoloLawyer, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 2949
Experience: Licensed Missisippi Attorney; Criminal Law, Family Law, Personal Injury, and Civil Defense
SoloLawyer and 4 other Family Law Specialists are ready to help you
Expert:  SoloLawyer replied 1 year ago.
Have you made any progress? I hope all is well!

Michael

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