In a child relocation case, the parent with substantial time-sharing and the parent who does not have substantial time-sharing are both required to seek court permission before relocating. In Brooks v. Brooks the trial court ordered the Father to file a petition to relocate pursuant to section 61.13001 when he moved from Sarasota to Hallandale Beach. The Florida Court of Appeal affirmed this decision. The Florida Court of Appeal reasoned that when Chapter 61 was rewritten in 2008, the legislature moved away from terms such as “primary residential parent” and “nonresidential parent.” Instead, the legislature adopted terminology such as “time-sharing”. Section 61.13001(3) requires a parent seeking relocation to file a petition to relocate. Relocation is defined by section 61.13001(1)(e) as ‘a change in the location of the principal residence of a parent…from his or her principal place of residence at the time of the last order establishing or modifying time-sharing, or at the time of filing the pending action to establish or modify time-sharing.” Since this definition excludes any reference to the relocating parent being the primary residential parent, the lower court ordered the Father to file a relocation petition before moving.
The Florida Court of Appeal reasoned that even though the title of the child relocation statute, section 61.13001 should be considered along with the statutory text, that title, “Parental relocation with a child” must be read in conjunction with and does not override the text of the statute. And the text in multiple places indicates that even a noncustodial parent with visitation rights would have to file a petition to relocate. Therefore, the Second District Court of Appeal in Brooks v. Brooks disagreed with the First District Court of Appeal in Raulerson v. Wright, 60 So. 3d 487,489 (Fla. 1st DCA 2011) and held that the Father, even as a noncustodial parent, was required to seek court permission before changing his residence, and it was not an abuse of discretion to compel him to do so after the fact.
To speak with a child relocation lawyer in Boynton Beach, Florida, contact Matthew Lane & Associates, P.A. at (561) 651-7273.