Can your ex cut off from the kids by moving out of Tennessee?

On Behalf of | Jun 23, 2021 | Child Custody |

Shared custody can be hard for parents. There are plenty of people who will go to great lengths to push their ex out of the lives of the children they share.  

Some people will ask for sole custody when the circumstances don’t justify that arrangement. Others might manipulate the children to turn them against the other parents through parental alienation.  

Another, surprisingly common tactic involves one parent moving and taking the kids with them. If you have shared custody of your children, can your ex just pack them up and leave Tennessee? 

State law limits relocations for those who share custody 

The Tennessee courts have always had the right to weigh in on family changes that will impact parental relationships. However, lawmakers took steps to protect parents from unfair relocation just a few years ago.  

Currently, Tennessee law requires that any parent who intends to move 50 miles or more away from the current play stay away notify their spouse and the courts of the upcoming move. In fact, they have to give 60 days of advance notice to comply with state law requirements.   

Both the court and the other parent could send test the move and prevent the parent from taking the children to the other side of Tennessee or out of the state.  

What happens when you respond to a relocation request?  

If you let the courts know that you do not agree with the relocation request, you will likely have to go to family court for a hearing. Both you and your ex will have the opportunity to present evidence. They will need to show that the move is in the best interests of the children and somehow necessary.   

You might present evidence that your ex wants to move to damage your relationship with the children. Threatening messages about cutting you off from the kids or even social media posts where they talk about leaving you behind could all help you show the courts that the motivation for the move is to affect your relationship with the kids.   

The courts could refuse the request from your ex or they might even adjust the custody order and give you more parenting time. Knowing your rights when your ex wants to move with the kids can help you protect your shared custody arrangement.