Considering a move to Texas? You may want to think about how relocation can impact your family.
As our society becomes more mobile, it becomes important to know how relocation can affect your family. Relocation can cause divorce or impact your parental rights with respect to child custody, visitation, and child support. Moreover, estate planning may need to be adjusted to comply with the rules of your new home state.
Laws among states can vary widely on these issues, so people considering relocation should be aware of the laws of both the state they are leaving as well as the laws of the state they are moving to.
In Texas, there are several factors to consider that affect child custody and visitation, including but not limited to: the reason for the relocation, the quality of the relationship between parent and child, the extent of interference the relocation may cause the relationship, the expense of travel for visitation, the benefit (if any) of the relocation, the harm (if any) of the relocation, the age and developmental needs of the child, the quality of life and resources that will be available to the child, family support, financial circumstance, and the best interest of the child.
Texas also adheres to child support guidelines that may affect the amount of child support a parent should pay to a custodial parent. It may result in an increase or a decrease from the current amount a parent pays.
Parents should also review any existing child custody orders and understand any restrictions that they may impose. For instance, does the order require notice to the other parent of the move? Does the order allow the non-relocating parent to object and fight the relocation? Does the order require the non-relocating parent to consent to the move?
And if you are relocating internationally, there may be additional issues to consider, such as passport restrictions and visa requirements.
Lastly, even if divorce or custody issues don’t affect you, you may still want to consider updating your estate documents when you move. Wills in one state may not meet the requirements of another state, and creating a will package online can be risky. Having a will and supporting estate documents helps ease the burden on your family when you pass away, and it ensures that your estate is distributed in a manner that you direct. Having a lawyer draft the documents is a small investment that can offer big financial savings and peace of mind later.
At Alexandra Geczi PLLC | a Family Law Practice, we handle divorce and relocation issues, including modifications and enforcements of interstate child custody, long distance visitation, and adustments to child support. We can also help with basic estate planning by drafting a new will and estate documents that comply with the laws of Texas.