What are my rights with taking my children out of state?

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What are my rights with taking my children out of state?

My husband and I want to get a divorce. We were planning on moving next week. He came to me today and said if I sign papers saying he has joint legal custody and gives me sole physical custody, then we can move. Otherwise, if I don’t sign, I can’t take the kids and need to stay here.. Wht are my rights?

Asked on November 14, 2011 under Family Law, Colorado

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

Okay, well, sign nothing unless you have an attorney review the documents.  What he is basically doing is black mailing you in some form so that he gives his consent to your move out of state.  That is because you can not legally take the children out of state and away from their Father without his consent.  It could be seen as kid napping.  But what he wants here is not necessarily anything he would not get any way by the court or in an agreement between you.  Joint legal custody is what the courts would prefer - where each parent has the right to make decisions for the child, each parent has equal rights to access, etc.  And you being the custodial parent with him having visitation is also not anything unusual if you are moving away with them.  But all these rights - and his consent - have to be spelled out in an agreement and not verbal. So seek legal help.  Good luck.


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