If you are considering a move to a new town or out of the state of California, this will almost certainly affect the child custody plan that you and your co-parent have in place. Even if you are excited about your possible move and the opportunities that it could create, it is likely that you will be nervous about bringing up the potential changes to the other parent.

A conversation about relocation can be a very difficult and complex one. It is important that you try to be as open and honest with the other parent as you can. It also helps not to take the other parent “by surprise,” when possible. For example, mentioning that you are considering applying for a job out-of-state and gauging the other parent’s response before you apply for that job is much better than announcing that you have been offered a job in another location and that you plan to move there soon.

Remember that relocating is common and viable

Relocating within the United States is a common phenomenon, and it should not necessarily be seen as a negative thing. Studies show that 16 percent of Americans move in any given year, and 43 percent of these moves are from one metropolitan area to another.

Relationships with both parents can still be maintained

Relocating away from one of the child’s parents is best done after the child is two or three years old in order for it to have less of an impact. After this time, children have the cognitive skills necessary to maintain long-distance relationships through video calls and visits.

If you are worried about how relocation might affect your child’s life, consider seeking experienced legal guidance.

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