Common causes of child custody changes include relocating to a new place or moving in with a new partner. If you learn that your ex-spouse is moving in with someone new, you may wonder how this will affect your child custody arrangements.
Legal issues will appear if these life changes happen around the time of the initial custody agreement as part of your divorce.
Ex-spouse stays in state
You as the complaining party have the burden of demonstrating to a court that the new living arrangements have an adverse effect on your child. Courts prioritize the best interest of the child.
Factors a judge will consider include the health, safety and welfare of your child around your ex-spouse’s new partner. It is unlikely a court will adjust custody arrangements too drastically.
Ex-spouse moves out-of-state
If your ex and his or her new significant other move to a different state than where they lived when the court approved the custody agreement, additional issues arise. The federal Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act is the legal answer for a co-parent who attempts to move your child across state borders with the intent to obstruct your parental rights.
Texas law states that parental kidnapping charges apply when a parent takes a minor child knowing that that he or she is not the custodial parent, the action will violate a court order or if there is an open lawsuit over custody of the child.
If you or the other parent ever decide to leave the state, you must get direct consent from the court and your ex-spouse.