Can My Ex Stop Me from Moving Interstate for Work?

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When partners separate, each spouse's life priorities become more evident. One of the questions that can arise is whether either partner can be restricted from moving for work.

1. If you don't have children, and no shared business interests.

There is no impediment to you moving state. All matters related to the financial settlement and legal separation can be enacted remotely.

2. If you have shared business interests.

If you have shared business interests, you may need to run these down over a period of time. If you need to work in the business while a sale process is underway it is in your interest to work with a mediator to work out how you can work together. While your partner cannot stop you moving, if by your actions you cause a material drop in the settlement value you can be held liable for the drop in value so it is in your interest to act in an amicable way.

3. If you have children together.

If you have primary or shared custody, your partner can apply for you not to move the children to a location that would be restricting to the other parent's access. This commonly can mean that you need to meet the other parent halfway, and need to work out how to maintain a relationship between the child and their parent through the distance if the pattern of their access changes.

For example, it could go from 3 nights a week in an alternating pattern, to 12 weeks a year over the school holidays in a block pattern. Luckily with video conferencing and other technologies it is getting easier to facilitate communications while apart.

If you have secondary custody, then the primary parent can also apply for you not to move a distance that limits how much time your currently care for your child.

In considering the application the court will look at the nature of the move and the best interests of the child. For example, is it a significant promotion? Can this promotion only be achieved by moving this far? Also, are the kids concerned about the parent moving? Will they still get access to a relationship with both parents? Will the child's financial circumstances improve? Will they have access to similar relationships with extended family?

If you or your partner is planning a significant move for work you should consult with a family law firm such as Charles Cooper Lawyers to determine how this will affect your settlement, access arrangements and ongoing support.