Florida Laws Regarding Relocation After Divorce

By Beverly Bird

No law can prevent an adult from moving if she wants to. If you were divorced in Florida, you can pack up and relocate any time you like -- but you may not be able to take your children. Florida’s laws regarding the relocation of children away from their other parent are specific. You can’t move beyond 50 miles without the express consent of either your spouse or the court.

Giving Notice

Even if you confer with your ex about your children on a regular basis, you must give him written notice if you want to move farther than 50 miles from your current home. Effective October 2008, Section 61.13001 of the Florida Code requires you to use a special form: a “Notice of Intent to Relocate With Child(ren).” You can find it on the state’s website and through county offices, and you must use it. A letter won’t suffice. You must send it to your ex-spouse and file it with the court as well.

Relocation by Consent

After you send your ex-spouse the notice, he has the option of agreeing to your move or objecting to it. If you’re moving 60 miles to the next county, he might not object. In this case, Florida law requires you to put the details of your relocation and your agreement in writing. It should be as detailed as possible, and you must submit it to the court for approval before you can move.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More


If your spouse does object, you might be in for a prolonged battle. He has 30 days after receiving your notice to decide what to do about it, and you can’t relocate during this time. If he doesn’t want you to move, he must file a written objection with the court within this 30-day period. The court will then place your relocation issue on the docket for a hearing. Relocation hearings are usually not settled in a single day of testimony. You'll probably have to appear in court repeatedly as a judge works toward deciding your matter.

The Court’s Decision

Florida courts are not unique in how they decide whether to permit a parent to relocate with a couple’s children -- it comes down to the best interests of your child. If you’re moving to take advantage of an amazing new job opportunity, this is in your favor. If you want to move to New Jersey because your new significant other lives there, the court will probably deny your request. One very significant factor a judge will take into consideration is your child’s relationship with her other parent. If he’s very involved in her life, a court would be less likely to disrupt that relationship by allowing her to move with you.


Under some circumstances, you may be able to extend Florida’s 50-mile radius limit. For example, if you currently live 30 miles from your ex-spouse, and the town you want to relocate to is 50 miles on the other side of his home, or a total of 80 miles from your current residence, you’d still be within 50 miles of him. A court would most likely allow this without the necessity of written notice and a court appearance. Check with a Florida attorney to be sure. If your divorce decree is dated prior to October 2006, and if it includes any provisions for parental relocation, then your decree would supersede the 2008 law. The exception is if it doesn’t mention anything about relocation. Then the procedure implemented by the Florida legislature in 2008 would apply.

Divorce is never easy, but we can help. Learn More
Missouri Divorce Law on the Custodial Parent Moving Out of State


Related articles

Colorado Law Concerning Noncustodial Parent Rights

If you're a non-custodial parent, Colorado is a good place to live – assuming you were divorced there and a Colorado court ordered your custody arrangement. The state's code stresses frequent, meaningful and continuing contact between a child and both divorced parents, and it has revamped its legislation to remove the word "visitation" and replace it with "parenting time." The term acknowledges that time a non-custodial parent spends with his child isn't just "visiting," and that non-custodial parents have certain rights.

Child Custody & State Lines in Indiana

Your divorce court distributed custody of your children based on your family’s circumstances at the time of your divorce, but circumstances often change after divorce. If you are the custodial parent and plan to relocate, Indiana law, which changed in 2006, requires you to provide notice to your ex-spouse so he has an opportunity to object to the move.

The Tennessee Joint Custody Relocation Statute

Tennessee law does not prevent a divorced parent from moving out of state, but if you have a joint custody arrangement, the other parent may be able to prevent you from taking your child with you. If you move, you will likely need a new parenting plan with an updated visitation schedule, which you may agree to with your ex-spouse. If the parents can't agree on new custody and visitation arrangements, the court may modify the schedule for you or prevent you from relocating the child if it concludes the move is not in the child's best interest.

Get Divorced Online

Related articles

Ohio Laws on Relocation & Child Custody After Divorce

Under Ohio law, a custodial parent wishing to relocate to a difference state must receive consent from the other parent ...

If You Get Divorced in Georgia Can You Move to a Different State With Your Kids?

Before 2003, Georgia was one of the more lenient states when allowing a custodial parent to move away or relocate with ...

Rights for a Divorced Father When the Mother Wants to Move Away

Parents aren't always equal under the law. In many divorce cases, courts name one parent as the primary custodian of ...

California Laws on Parent Relocation

When parents share parental responsibility, the state of California prevents the custodial parent from relocating with ...

Browse by category
Ready to Begin? GET STARTED