The custody order created by the courts as part of your Texas divorce will limit some of your options as a parent. For example, you will only be able to be around your children during your appointed parenting times.

Additionally, if you want the children to live with you, there are usually restrictions on where you can live. The courts may outline limitations on relocation in terms of the county, miles from the other parent or even school district.

If you want to move farther away than is permitted in the current custody order, you will have to request a modification. There are several steps involved in getting permission to relocate with your children after a divorce.

You have to notify the courts and your ex ahead of time

When you request a modification related to relocation, you have to give the courts advance notice so that your ex has a chance to weigh in on the issue. They might oppose your request, which may mean an uphill battle when it comes to securing the modification.

If your ex doesn’t want to work with you on this issue, you will have to convince the courts that the move is in the best interests of the children.

You need a compelling reason to move far away from their current home

Some parents will try to move after a divorce as a means of cutting their ex out of their life and the lives of their shared children. In order to prevent these attempts at parental alienation, the Texas family courts generally expect you to have a good reason to request an out-of-state move.

A job offer that would be hard to match locally could be one reason. Having family support or resources available to you, such as a place to stay rent-free while you go back to school, could be another reason.

Provided that the courts agree that you retaining custody and the move are in your kids’ best interests, they may modify the custody arrangement to allow the move. However, in that situation, your ex will likely receive additional concessions, such as having the majority of the summer with the kids since they won’t be close enough for frequent visitation.