How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask JD 1992 Your Own Question
JD 1992
JD 1992, Lawyer
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 32341
Experience:  Began practicing Family Law in 1992
11068102
Type Your Family Law Question Here...
JD 1992 is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My baby's mother is trying to leave the state with my

Customer Question

My baby's mother is trying to leave the state with my daughter. Is there anything that I can do to stop her from taking her?
JA: What state are you in? It matters because laws vary by location.
Customer: Florida
JA: Has anything been filed or reported?
Customer: No, she just told me today that she was going to leave next weekend to Chicago and is taking my baby girl with her. We were never married but my name is ***** ***** birth certificate.
JA: Anything else you want the lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: no
Submitted: 1 month ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 month ago.

Hello and thank you for contacting us. This is Dwayne B. and I’m an expert here and looking forward to assisting you today.

Customer: replied 1 month ago.
Can you tell me what steps I need to take to keep my baby's mother from leaving the state with her?
Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 month ago.

Yes, although as with all other requests it isn't guaranteed.

Most judges consider a move out of state, particularly one across the country, as grounds for reconsideration of parental custody. It isn't automatic grounds to change custody, but it will almost certainly get you a consideration.

The way to stop the move in the meantime is to have your lawyer file for an injunction to prevent her from removing your daughter from the state. There is some question as to whether it is Constitutional to prevent an adult from moving and so you word the injunction request where it is to prevent moving the child.

Many people ask if they can handle this themselves and my opinion is no. Injunctions are very, very difficult and if you don't do them perfectly the judge is required to deny the request.

The steps to an injunction are:

1) An Application for TRO (Temporary Restraining Order) is filed along with supporting evidence such as affidavits. Usually the Application for Injunction is made at the same time. The TRO is a temporary measure and is not absolutely required before you get an injunction.
2) An Ex Parte (without the other side present) Hearing is conducted and the judge either issues the TRO or denies it. If the TRO is issued the judge orders a bond set in a sufficient amount to compensate the other side for any damages accumulated while the TRO is in place if the applicant fails to prove their right to an injunction.
3) A hearing on the TRO is set.
4) The TRO and notice of Hearing is served on the defendant.
5) The defendant should immediately begin following the judge's orders.
6) The TRO hearing is held and each side has an opportunity to present evidence and question witnesses.
7) The judge makes the decision on whether to convert the TRO to a Temporary Injunction or not.
8) If the TRO is converted to a Temporary Injunction then the judge sets a new bond to be in place.
9) Discovery is conducted by both sides.
10) A request for hearing date is made on the matter of converting the Temporary Injunction into a Permanent Injunction.
11) The hearing/trial is held on the Permanent Injunction and the judge issues a ruling.

These are what are known as extraordinary remedies and the procedural rules for these as well as the case law are EXTREMELY specific and difficult. If ANY mistakes are made the judge has no choice but to deny the relief and will not likely reconsider it in the future.

Just as an example, getting injunctive relief, both temporary and permanent, requires that evidence be offered of:
1) An immediate need,
2) Which, if not granted, will result in irreparable harm,
3) With no adequate remedy at law, and
4) (on temporary order) The person requesting the injunction is likely to succeed at a full trial on the merits.

If evidence is not offered to meet these four requirements, in a manner that the judge knows this is what the evidence shows, then the petition will be denied.

There are more requirements than this depending on the exact facts of the case but it is very, very easy to mess up one of these and end up having to pay damages to the other side just because your paperwork wasn't done properly.

Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 month ago.

I am about to sign off and will be traveling tomorrow. However, I will try to check in when I can.

Expert:  JD 1992 replied 1 month ago.

If your question has been answered then I'd offer my best wishes to you and ask that you please not forget to leave a Positive Rating so I receive credit for my work. Of course, please feel free to ask any follow up questions in this thread. I want to be sure that all of your questions are answered.

Related Family Law Questions