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Reviewing Texas’ parental relocation law

On Behalf of | Mar 4, 2022 | Child Custody |

For divorced parents in Texas, the opportunity to move away from their current city, county or state presents a number of different challenges. Those challenges often depend on the distance one intends to move.

In many cases, a parent awarded the right to determine the primary residence of their children can typically move to any county adjacent to the one where the court has jurisdiction over their case without having to seek any modifications to their custody agreement. This offers such parents the freedom to pursue new opportunities while also preserving the other parent’s ability to maintain consistent contact with the kids. However, should one want to move further away, then one must meet certain criteria.

Moving out of Texas with the kids

While many might see the likelihood of a parent relocating following a divorce, some might think the chances of them trying to move away from the state remote. Yet statistics suggest otherwise. According to information shared by Move.com, Texas ranks among the most common states for people to move to and away from.

The state’s parental relocation laws center on determining what is the “home state” of the children subject to a custody agreement. Per Section 152.102 of the Texas Family Code, the state defines a child’s home state as the one in which they lived for six consecutive months prior to the commencement of a custody proceeding.

Meeting the requirements for parental relocation

In the event that a divorced parent wants to take the kids away from their legally designated home state, they must provide all parties to their custody agreement with notice of their intentions. This provides the time needed to modify an agreement to accommodate the other parent’s time with the kids (without placing an undue burden on them to continue doing so).