Can I Change the Jurisdiction of My Child Custody Order?

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My boyfriend has full legal custody of his 5-year-old daughter. The child’s mother is not happy about this even though she has not been in her daughter’s life. My boy recently moved to Washington with his daughter from California. His custody papers say that the mother can have “reasonable” visit with the child within her father’s standards. It does not say anything about relocation to another state. My question is since he is now living in Washington, can he switch his custody papers to Washington’s jurisdiction, or does he even need to do so? The mother still resides in California.

[NOTE: Articles and answers on DearEsq., while written and published by lawyers, do not constitute legal advice, and no attorney-client relationship is formed by your reading of this information. You should always consult with an attorney for any legal situations.]

Your boyfriend will not likely be able to change court jurisdictions. Since the matter was heard in California, Washington State will not have jurisdiction over the issue. You will have to find a California State law that allows a change in jurisdiction, otherwise, the issues regarding the matter will still be heard there.



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Author: House Attorney