If you have sole or joint custody of your child or children and are considering moving, which will make regular visitation difficult or impossible for the other parent, there are certain procedures that the law in BC requires you to follow. The introduction of the Family Law Act in 2013 has changed the process for applying to move with your child.
First, you must give the other parent or guardian 60 days written notice before you move, outlining where you plan to move and when; this is called ‘giving notice’. The other parent or guardian then has 30 days to ‘object’ to your intended move. If they do not object within 30 days, you may be able to go ahead with your move.
If the other parent or guardian objects to your move, then unless you can reach an agreement, you may need to go to court to have a judge decide if the move is in the “best interests of the child.” Typically, a judge will consider such things as:
- the reasons for the move;
- will the move improve your child’s quality of life;
- the child’s connection to their current community;
- the age of the children;
- the involvement of each parent or guardian in the child’s life; and
- the overall best interests of the child.
The court will also consider whether you have made arraignments to maintain relationships with the other parent or guardian, and their relatives, if you are allowed to move.
Moving with a child can be complicated. It is an important decision that should not be made lightly.
Contact us to see how we can help. First consultations are free.