Can my ex prevent me from moving out of the country with our daughter?

Additional Information:

My ex and I have a 6 year old daughter.  He sees her every other weekend and occasionally during the week.  We live in Acton, MA but I have met someone who lives outside of the US and we are getting married this year.  I am also pregnant with his child.   I want to move with my daughter to be near him.  What are my legal responsibilities in this situation?  I’d still like my daughter to be able to see her biological father, but obviously it’s not going to be as frequent and can he prevent us from moving?


The short answer to whether or not you can be prevented is that it depends on what the current Court Orders state and the nature of your relationship between your ex and the child.  If you were married to the father of your daughter, you will absolutely have to file a Complaint for Modification seeking permission to “remove” the child from the Commonwealth for residency purposes.  There is strong case law that outlines the factors that are considered by the Court in determining whether or not to permit the removal.  The fact that you are pregnant and engaged to be married may or may not be sufficient grounds to justify the granting of the relief you’re seeking.  The Court will look at the advantage to you and the child as well as what is in the best interests of the child.  The closeness of your daughter’s relationship to her biological father will play a significant factor as well.  The exception to the above would be if your ex agreed to the removal in writing.  I would strongly suggest that you consult with a family law attorney as soon as possible. 

The Acton Family Law Attorneys at Berid & Schutzbank provide legal counsel regarding child custody and parental rights and all  matters related to divorce.  The attorneys serve individuals and divorcing couples in Acton, Massachusetts and the nearby towns including Boxborough, Stow, Maynard, Sudbury, Concord, Bedford, Carlisle, Westford, and Littleton, MA.


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