I AM PLANNING ON MOVING. IS THERE ANYTHING I HAVE TO DO?

by George A. Lohmeier March 2013

If you are a custodial parent or a non-custodial parent of a child of divorce or as the result of a paternity action, and you intend to move, whether to another state or across the street, you are required under Indiana law to file a Notice of Intention to Relocate. (See I.C. 31-17-2.2).

Your notice must contain the following: (1) your intended new address and new mailing address, if different from your new residence, (2) any new telephone numbers, (3) the date you intend to relocate, (4) a brief statement of the reasons why you are moving, and (5) if this will interfere with the current parenting time or visitation plan, your proposal for a revised parenting plan for the other parent, or grandparents if they have visitation. In addition, you must inform these other individuals that any objection they may have must be filed within 60 days after they receive your notice. You must also advise them that they have a right to file a petition to modify the current custody or parenting time orders or, if grandparent visitation has been ordered, that they can file to modify the orders.

Your notice is to be filed with the Clerk of the Court in the county where your custody, parenting time, or grandparent visitation order was entered. You must provide the other party or parties with a notice by certified mail 90 days before you intend to move or, if you have decided to move sooner than 90 days, then within 10 days after you become aware that you plan to relocate.

A custodial parent who wants to relocate a significant distance or out of state cannot be prevented from doing so. You can, however, be prevented from doing so with your child or children. In the event the non-relocating parent or grandparent objects or files to modify custody or visitation because of the intended move, they may ask the court for a temporary restraining order preventing the move until the case can be heard by the Judge. If you move without notifying the Clerk and the other party, the court would have the authority to order the child or children returned and, if necessary, be temporarily placed with the non-relocating parent.

For those who fear that disclosure of this information will create a significant risk of substantial harm, you should ask the court for an order allowing you to keep your information in a secure location in the Clerk's office and that it not be disclosed to the other non-relocating individuals.

We have several attorneys who regularly practice in family law. If you have a family law matter you wish to discuss with an attorney in confidence, please contact our firm to discuss an appointment with one of our family law attorneys.