A parent who wants to relocate with a child to a different state, or to a distant location within Nevada, must take specific steps before moving.
Seek Consent from the Other Parent
A parent who desires to relocate must first attempt to obtain the written consent of the non-relocating parent. This step is required whether the relocating parent has primary physical custody of the child or joint physical custody.
Petition the Court for Permission to Relocate
If the non-relocating parent refuses to consent to the relocating parent’s move, then the relocating parent must petition the court for permission to relocate. With this petition, the relocating parent must prove to the court the following:
- “There exists a sensible, good-faith reason for the move, and the move is not intended to deprive the non-relocating parent of his or her parenting time”;
- “The best interests of the child are served by allowing the relocating parent to relocate with the child”; and
- “The child and the relocating parent will benefit from an actual advantage as a result of the relocation.”
If the relocating parent proves those three things, then the court will consider the following factors and how the proposed relocation would affect the child, the parents, and each of their interests:
- “The extent to which the relocation is likely to improve the quality of life for the child and the relocating parent”;
- “Whether the motives of the relocating parent are honorable and not designed to frustrate or defeat any visitation rights accorded to the non-relocating parent”;
- “Whether the relocating parent will comply with any substitute visitation orders issued by the court if permission to relocate is granted”;
- “Whether the motives of the non-relocating parent are honorable in resisting the petition for permission to relocate or to what extent any opposition to the petition for permission to relocate is intended to secure a financial advantage in the form of ongoing support obligations or otherwise”;
- “Whether there will be a realistic opportunity for the non-relocating parent to maintain a visitation schedule that will adequately foster and preserve the parental relationship between the child and the non-relocating parent if permission to relocate is granted”; and
- “Any other factor necessary to assist the court in determining whether to grant permission to relocate.”
The law requires the relocating parent to prove the move is in the best interest of the child.
The court may award attorney fees and costs to the relocating parent if the non-relocating parent refuses to consent to the relocation:
- “Without having reasonable grounds for such refusal”; or
- “For the purpose of harassing the relocating parent.”
Also, a parent who relocates without following these steps is subject to criminal violations, and if the non-relocating parent files an action in response to the violation, then he or she can recover attorney fees and costs.
Help with a Parent Relocation
If you are a parent who needs help taking the proper steps to relocate with a child, or if you need to defend yourself against a relocation, then contact me today.
Applicable laws: NRS 125C.006-0075; NRS 200.359.