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Relocation with Children - Notice and Objection

Emotions can run very high, when a primary residential parent decides to relocate from the area for a variety of reasons such as, a better job or to be closer to family. This decision can have an immense impact on the children and the other parent’s time with them. When a parenting plan or child custody order have been entered by the Court, and the primary residential parent intends on moving outside of the child’s school district, then the Relocation Act applies. (RCW 26.09.405).

In accordance with the Act, before a child can be moved outside of their school district, the primary residential parent must give notice of the indention to move. The other parent then has an opportunity to contest the relocation.

The primary residential parent is required to give the non-relocating parent 60-days notice of the intent to relocate. In the event 60-day notice is not possible, because of some unexpected event, 5-day notice is required once the parent becomes aware of the anticipated relocation. The primary residential parent may also have to file for a new parenting plan, since the existing plan may not be workable given the geographic distance created by the relocation.

Once notice of the intended relocation is received, the non-relocating parent has 30 days to object with the court. When the objection has been filed, the court will then schedule a trial date, usually on an expedited basis, but sometimes up to four (4) months away.

If the non-relocating parent does not file a timely objection with the Court, the relocation will be permitted. However, when the non-relocating parent does file an objection, the primary residential parent may not relocate until a hearing takes place addressing the objection. As a result, it is critical for non-relocating parents who seek to oppose the relocation be diligent about timely filing their objection.

Ever since the inception of the Relocation Act, our firm has litigated child relocation cases with a tremendous amount of success for clients, both seeking to relocate and for those parents opposing the relocation of their children. Fully understanding the legal requirements of this Act, is paramount when facing a relocation case.

Family law litigation, including relocation with children, can be emotionally difficult and complex. Decisions made about each step of the litigation can affect you for many years. We have years of experience helping our clients through the difficulty of family law and relocation actions and can help you through the process. Contact us today at (253) 838 – 3377 or email at, to talk about your case.

Disclaimer: All materials provided on this website have been prepared by Bains Law Firm for general information purposes only and no representation is made as to their completeness or accuracy. Information on this website is not intended as legal advice, and may not be relied upon as such. Only an attorney who can review the unique facts of each case and apply them to the statutes, case law and court rules can provide legal advice. Nothing in this website shall be construed to create an attorney-client relationship.

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