Can you move with your kids after a Tennessee divorce?

After finalizing your Tennessee divorce, you may find yourself wanting to relocate within the state or to move away. This may allow you to pursue job opportunities, be closer to family or friends, or just get a fresh start. If you are a parent, however, you may require permission in order to take your children with you.

Under Tennessee state law, parents desiring to relocate with children outside of the state or more than 50 miles away from the child’s other parent must reach an agreement with the non-relocating parent or obtain permission from the court. At least 60 days before your intended move date, you must send a notice to your child’s other parent informing him or her of your plan to relocate, where you are moving to and the reasons for your move. If the non-relocating parent agrees to the relocation, you may work together to create a new visitation schedule and file a joint petition with the court to alter your existing agreement.

Should your child’s other parent object to your relocation, the decision falls to the court. If your child spends equal time with you and his or her other parent, the court may consider several factors to determine if the relocation is in the child’s best interests. For example, the court may take into account the existing parent-child relationships, your willingness to encourage an ongoing relationship between your child and your ex, your ability to provide for your child’s needs, and your child’s emotional needs and developmental level.

With few exceptions, the court may permit your relocation if you are your child’s primary caregiver and he or she does not spend substantial time with your ex. This is the case provided the court does not find that there is no reasonable purpose for your move, the move poses a threat of specific and serious harm to your child, or the reasons for your relocation are meant to impede your ex’s parental rights or ability to spend time with your child.

This post contains information that is not intended as legal advice. Rather, it should only be used for general purposes.