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How Can I Move My Child's Home in Louisiana? (FAQs About Relocation)

Authored By: Lagniappe Law Lab

FAQs About Relocating a Child's Home

What is relocation? +

"Relocation" means a change in the principal residence of a child for a period of sixty days or more. A temporary absence from the principal residence is not a relocation. In short, relocation is a permanent change of the child's physical address -- moving.

Who can propose relocation of a minor child? +

In general, a parent of the minor child or a person with designated rights under a current court order can propose relocation of a minor child. 

If there is a current court order

A person can propose relocation if there is a current custody order that:

  • names them as the sole custodian;

  • names them as domiciliary parent in a joint custody arrangement; or

  • awards them shared equal physical custody.

If there is no court order

A person can propose relocation if they share "equal parental authority" of a child, or they are the natural tutor of a child born outside of marriage. If there is no court order, and you are unsure whether you are authorized to propose relocation of a minor child, you should talk to a lawyer.

Do I have to give Notice of Intent to Relocate? +

It depends.  If you are planning to move your child out of the state of Louisiana, you will need to give Notice of Intent to Relocate.  If you are planning to move within Louisiana, whether you have to give notice depends on your specific situation.  For more information, read this article "About Notice of Intent to Relocate".

Who is entitled to receive a Notice of Intent to Relocate? +

Any person awarded custody rights by a court order is entitled to receive notice. Even if there is no custody order in place, any person recognized as a parent of the child is entitled to notice.

What happens after the Notice of Intent to Relocate? +

What happens after the Notice of Intent to Relocate depends on the facts of the situation.  For more information, read our "Guide to the Relocation Process".

What if the person who gets a notice does not agree to the relocation? +

The person proposing relocation may need to ask the Court to enter an order allowing the move before it occurs. This process is called a contested relocation. 

When there is shared equal physical custody of a child under a court order

If multiple persons share equal physical custody of a child under a court order, the person proposing relocation must get the other person's express written consent to relocate or permission from the Court to relocate. If there is shared physical custody and there is no agreement, the person proposing relocation must get permission from the Court. 

Person recognized as a parent or person awarded custody or visitation by the court

If the person is receiving notice because they are recognized as a parent or any other person awarded custody or visitation under a court decree, they must make a formal objection to the relocation within thirty days after they receive the notice. If a written objection is filed, within thirty days after receiving the objection, the person proposing relocation must ask for Court approval to relocate. 

If they fail to object within the time allowed, the person who gave notice may relocate. 

 

What happens if a person fails to give notice of a proposed relocation? +

Failure to give notice may result in severe consequences. The Court can consider a parent's failure to give notice in deciding whether to authorize a relocation. Failure to give notice of relocation can also be a basis for the Court to order the return of a child relocated without notice or court authorization. Finally, a failure to give notice can be grounds for the Court to order the person to pay the reasonable expenses incurred by the person objecting to the relocation.

How does the Court decide whether to allow a relocation? +

The person seeking relocation has to show that it is in the best interest of the child, using relocation "factors".

Where can I get more information about relocation? +

Last Review and Update: Sep 04, 2020