In all the things you have to think about when moving, it is easy to overlook something. If you have a divorce decree with continuing obligations, such as child support or spousal support, you will need to consider how your move will impact those obligations. If you have partial or full custody of a child, you may even need to petition the court for a modification.
How moving impacts custody
If you have a child, and your divorce or modification addressed child custody, you should expect that your move will need to be addressed with the court. A move by either parent could trigger a change in circumstances and support a change in custody arrangements. If you have primary custody, you may need to get permission from the court to move out of state or even a certain distance away in your state. If you share custody, the specific arrangements may need to change if you are moving. If you will be moving much closer than you were, it may be appropriate to have a custody arrangement that allows both parents weekday time. If you are moving much farther away, it may be more appropriate to have parenting time limited to long weekends or school vacations.
How moving impacts child support
If your move impacts the amount of time you will be spending with your child, it will likely be appropriate to change the child support obligation. You may be moving for a new job. If there is a change in income with the change in job, you may also have a change in your child support obligation, even if there is not a change in parenting time. However, remember if you are decreasing your income, the change in income cannot be voluntary. If the court believes that you are willingly earning less money than you could earn, they could treat you as if you are making more income than you are.
How moving impacts spousal support
Your move may also impact spousal support obligations. In certain situations, spousal support will cease if the person receiving the support moves in with a significant other. Additionally, if the move results in a change of income, your spousal support obligations could also change. Your divorce decree or modification will provide additional information about the conditions that could trigger a change in spousal support.
There is a lot of planning that goes into a move. Make sure you spend enough time making sure you understand how your move will impact your divorce decree or other modifications.