Whether you can move out of New Jersey with your child[ren] is not as simple as you may think. Under the laws of New Jersey, you cannot simply leave the state with minor children without the express permission from the other parent. Strange as it might sound, even if the other parent no longer resides in New Jersey, as the custodial parent, it is still your obligation to obtain consent from the other parent before relocating out of state. If you do not have consent from the other parent, you will need to file an application with the court, in the county in which you and the child[ren] live, for permission to move out of New Jersey with the child[ren].
Any time you are before the court you must ensure that you know the law pertaining to your application and how it applies to the facts of your case. Your first step will have to be showing the court that you have a good faith reason to move out of New Jersey and that the move will not be inimical to the child[ren]. This simply means that you will need to show that there is a good reason for your decision to leave New Jersey and that doing so will not hurt the child[ren] in any way. This is not a very high burden, but still must be accomplished by use of a persuasive argument and clear understanding of the law. Once you have done that, with success, the burden will then shift to the parent opposing the relocation to prove to the court that the move would be inimical to the child[ren]’s best interest. While it may sound simple, these cases can get complicated fast and often need the help of psychological experts and evaluations of both parties and the child[ren].
Prior to the move out of New Jersey, or if you know the other parent of your child[ren] is planning on moving, make sure you speak with an experienced attorney who can best advise you as to your rights regarding relocation. If you think a relocation action is in your future do not hesitate to contact us at (732) 479-4711 for a consultation with one of our attorneys! We will not tell you what you want to hear. We will tell you what you need to know.
Associate Marissa Hirsch, Esq., contributed to this blog.