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 Ely Your Own Question
Ely
Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 101983
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
7286322
Type Your Legal Question Here...
Ely is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My wife is insisting on pursuing a separation; we reside in

Customer Question

My wife is insisting on pursuing a separation; we reside in Maine. She just told me she is looking for houses to rent in Kansas. We have one 18 year old son starting college there and we have 15 year old son who she would relocate there in TWO WEEKS. I have been informed her rental cost is very expensive and we own a home in Maine so something will give financially. I would reside here until its sold off. First isn't there a process we need to undertake before she can relocate my son out of state and then also make major financial decisions that will hurt both of us?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.

Hello and welcome to JustAnswer. Please note: This is general information for educational purposes only and is not legal advice. No specific course of action is proposed herein, and no attorney-client relationship or privilege is formed by speaking to an expert on this site. By continuing, you confirm that you understand and agree to these terms.

I am sorry to hear about this situation. Without any court orders in place, either party can (a) take a child out of state and (b) make financial decision in a marriage.

Under Mich. Comp. Laws § 750.350a, a court order is required to be broken for custodial interference to apply. Without it, either party has natural rights as a parent to take the child. The other party can say no, but the parties have to work it out peacefully. And, no law decides how financial matters are handled in a marriage.

Now, you do have the ability to ask for temporary orders (even emergency orders) if she or you file(s) for divorce/separation, asking to:

-not take the child out of state, and

-to freeze any unnecessary/major financial decisions by either party until the assets of the marriage are divided.

However, this has to be done in court and for that, a separation/custody/divorce matter actually has to be filed.

Good luck.

Please note: If I tell you simply what you wish to hear, this would be unfair to you. I need to be honest with you and sometimes this means providing information that is not optimal. Negative ratings are reserved for experts who are rude or for erroneous information. Please rate me on the quality of my information; do not punish me for my honesty.

I hope this helps and clarifies. Please use the SEND or REPLY button to keep chatting, or please RATE when finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating. Kindly rate my answer as one of TOP THREE FACES/STARS and then SUBMIT, as this is how experts get credit for our time. Rating my answer the bottom two faces/stars (or failing to submit the rating) does not give me credit and reflects poorly on me, even if my answer is correct. I work very hard to formulate an informative and honest answer for you; please reciprocate my good faith with a positive rating.

Customer: replied 11 months ago.
Thanks. You referenced a Michigan law. I was wondering if Michigan was confused with Maine where I mentioned where we reside.
Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.

Oops, I am sorry! I did read Michigan. Then my answer does change. Please allow me a second...

Expert:  Ely replied 11 months ago.

My answer does change, then:

Without any court orders in place, either party can make financial decision in a marriage. That remains true. However, she can be seen as interfering with custody under 17-A Me. Rev. Stat. Ann. § 303(1)(A). In State v. Butt, 656 A.2d 1225, 1227 (Me. 1995), the Court states that "There is no requirement in the plain language of section 303(1)(A), as there is in section 303(1)(B), that those custody rights flow from a court order or decree." In other words, a parent taking the child and running away to evade custody may be custodial interference. NOW - that is not the case here. She is clear where she is going, she is not hiding the child, etc. So IN REALITY the authorities are unlikely to prosecute her for doing so. HOWEVER, this can be used to discourage her from moving, by scaring her that a criminal complaint may be filed (even if in reality it would have no teeth).

Again, you do have the ability to ask for temporary orders (even emergency orders) if she or you file(s) for divorce/separation, asking to:

-not take the child out of state, and

-to freeze any unnecessary/major financial decisions by either party until the assets of the marriage are divided.

My apologies for the earlier misunderstanding.

Gentle Reminder: Please, use REPLY or SEND button to keep chatting, or RATE POSITIVELY and SUBMIT your rating when we are finished. You may always ask follow ups at no charge after rating.