My Ex Moved Away With Our Son, What Can I do?

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“I am the custodial primary parent of our 16 yr old son. His father and I use to get along and when our son was 10 he wanted to live with his father (we lived within 5 miles of each other) so we orally agreed that we would have an “open door” type agreement BUT our son would come back with me for High School. Well, time moved on and my son & his father moved 4 hrs away from me (at the time I was okay with it as he would come back to me for high school – we never changed any court documents, etc..). Well, I am not being “phased out” and our son is not doing well in high school and I want him back. What can I do?? The county I live in still has jurisdiction and we never changed court documents – I still am the primary custodial parent. My son has a great social life and plays for the high school football team…so he is on the fence about moving and his father & I are NOT getting along anymore. His father is a bad egg – 3 DUI, several evictions, etc..I have a stable home life…
What can I do…”

[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.]

Generally speaking, you will need to file with the court, requesting that the court enforce the existing order – however, almost certainly what will then happen is that either your ex will request, or the court will on its own order, an evaluation to determine what is in the best interest of your son. Unfortunately, courts are loath to disturb the status quo – your son has been living with his father for the past 6 years, and absent the situation truly being a detriment to your son, there is a good chance that the court will revise the order to reflect your son living with your ex.

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Author: House Attorney

A house attorney has answered this question.