Thinking of relocating for work, but unsure of the impact it would have on your children?
We have outlined the steps you are legally required to take to ensure that custody does not get taken away from you.
What Happens When One Parent Relocates For Work?
One of the most difficult parenting disputes comes up when one parent wants to relocate with a child. The law of parental mobility rights in Ontario currently states that a parent can move with their child, if the move will not affect the other parent’s access.
Depending on if the relocation would affect access, the parent that is relocating needs the agreement of the residing parent (or court order) that sets out new or updated access.
If the parent who seeks to relocate with the child can convince a judge that the move is in the best interest of the child, typically the new order will be pushed through.
Otherwise, without a Court order allowing the move, you will need the other parent’s authorization to relocate out of the province with the child.
Depending on the other parent’s involvement in raising the child, the Court will review all of the circumstances on a case-by-case basis to determine if the benefits of the move outweigh the impact on the change in access. If the access can reasonably be made up to the other parent the Court will decide in the best interest of the child.
Custody is evaluated based on the child’s best interest and who would be better suited to take care of the child at this stage of their life.
At a younger age, when possible, courts usually encourage more frequent contact between the child and the parents, thereby minimizing long periods of time where one or the other parent would be absent. If this is not possible, a strong primary caregiver is usually encouraged to foster as much stability as possible in the life of the child.
Additional Information Links
- Moving after separation or divorce?: https://www.justice.gc.ca/eng/fl-df/fact5-fiches5.html
- Moving and the Divorce Act: https://www.law-faqs.org/national-faqs/divorce/mobility-rights/
- Moving Ontario Family Law Forward Act, 2020, S.O. 2020, c. 25 – Bill 207: https://www.ontario.ca/laws/statute/s20025
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This blog is made available by the law firm publisher, Epstein & Associates, for educational purposes. It provides general information and a general understanding of the law but does not provide specific legal advice. Any specific questions about your legal concerns please contact us now and speak to an expert today.