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Nov 28

Co-parenting after a divorce is hard when you and your co-parent live in different states. Unlike in some other states, joint custody is becoming more common. Now that you’ve gone through the legal process of modifying your custody order to accommodate a parent’s relocation, you face the daunting task of long-distance co-parenting. The possibility of a complication in this procedure increases significantly if the child has a physical home away from the country. When parents live in different states it can have an impact on the visitation schedule in a child custody case. Out of state visitation schedules are not easy plans to create for several reasons. The logistics often include a “week-on, week-off” schedule. No matter what the reason for the long-distance living arrangements – job relocation, military service or just a desire to live elsewhere – studies show that there can be a lasting emotional impact on the child. I use an example of Tony who was a fantastic father and should have gotten parenting time but because he lived far away from the mother and the child's school, the judge did not give the father parenting time with his child. How Child Custody and “Home State” is Decided. Co-parenting can be difficult enough when both parents live in the same neighborhood, but co-parenting with someone who lives in another state complicates things. If, for instance, the parents live in different states or countries, a long-distance parenting plan would probably be appropriate. When parents live in different states, especially those separated by long distances, it is critical that both parents try to support the child’s relationship with both parents. It’s hard enough to co-parent when your ex lives down the road or in the next town over. It will be tough for everyone involved, but if the move means less time with your children, adjusting will be especially difficult for you. This is especially concerning when one of the parents lives in or plans to relocate to a different city or state; anytime parents live more than about 50 miles from each other, this can be a major issue. Frequent contact by telephone, e-mail, and instant messaging may help the non-custodial parent to be a part of the child’s daily life. The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJA) dictates how courts handle custody decisions when the parents live in two different states. A long-distance parenting plan generally affords the non-custodial parent blocks of time during summer and winter break, but little time during the school year. A lot. How Do I Co-Parent When My Kids Live in Another State? When two parents live in separate countries, child custody may progress through various rules and guidelines that are vastly different than in the United States depending on the court system of the nation. Joint Custody or 50/50 Parenting Plan. In joint custody arrangements, the child(ren) reside with each parent about 50% of the time. The Act gives courts the authority to determine which state is considered the child’s home state.

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