If I am married, can I legally take my 2 children and move to another state?

UPDATED: Aug 22, 2011

Advertiser Disclosure

It’s all about you. We want to help you make the right legal decisions.

We strive to help you make confident insurance and legal decisions. Finding trusted and reliable insurance quotes and legal advice should be easy. This doesn’t influence our content. Our opinions are our own.

Get Legal Help Today

Compare Quotes From Top Companies and Save

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption

If I am married, can I legally take my 2 children and move to another state?

I want out of my marriage but need to move to another state to be with family who will support and help me get back up on my feet. Where I want to go is only 3 hours from were I live now and I do not want to keep my children away from their father. Is there any way legally that I can take my children and move before the divorce even if he is against me moving? What are my options at this point, when I have no were else to go?

Asked on August 22, 2011 Mississippi


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

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Since there is no court order in affect, you can take your children out-of-state.  However, their father could go to court in MS and obtain an order which will require you to return with them.  If you fail to do so, you could be charged with parental kidnapping. The factof the matter is that the best way for you to obtain legal custody is for you to go to court first. You can get a temporary custody order from the court (a permanent order will be issued at such time as a divorce is finalized).  In deciding whether or not you can then move out-of-state, the court will consider "the bests interests of the child" in making its determination. If the parent who will have custody of the children is moving for no purposeful reason, the court will more than likely deny the move. However, if the custodial parent must re-locate for work, to have better access to medical facilities for a sick child, to be near a family support system (your case), etc. the court is more likely to grant the move.

Note:  You could file in court after you have obtained residency in your new state. But that typically takes around 6 months and your husband could go to court in MS in the meantime. 

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 AttorneyPages.com 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.

Get Legal Help Today

Find the right lawyer for your legal issue.

secured lock Secured with SHA-256 Encryption