Can I move out of state with my children?

UPDATED: Oct 1, 2022

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Can I move out of state with my children?

I moved to MT with my husband and children; he is the father of my 2 boys; I have another child, a girl. I want to go back to MO with my children and divorce him. He is mentally and verbally abusive to me and my daughter and I am very unhappy in my marriage. I want to move to where my family is and my support system. I have no one here.

Asked on November 2, 2018 under Family Law, Missouri


M.D., Member, California and New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 4 years ago | Contributor

First of all, as to your daughter, your husband has no rights regarding your moving with her unless he has legally adopted her. With respect to your boys, unless and until there is a custody order in effect or a divorce has been filed, you can move with them as well. That having been said, if your husband files for either custody or divorce in MT before you establish residency in MO and can file there, then you can be forced to return to the state. If you fail to do so, you can be charged with parental kidnapping. Right now your best option is to file for temporary custody before you move. Depending on the custody order, you may be able to move. Otherwise, you will need to stay in MT, at least for a while. Again depending on how permanent custody is awarded. At this point, you should consult with a local divorce attorney who can best advise you further.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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