Jackson, MO asked in Family Law and Child Custody for Missouri

Q: My daughter's father says he will not let her move out of state with me to pursue my Master's degree. What can I do?

I am about to graduate with my bachelor's degree and have begun applying to graduate programs. My 10-year-old daughter's father says he will never let her move out of state with me, not even to pursue educational and career advancement. I think it would be a good opportunity for her to experience life in a new way and have some new life experiences. She is quite emotionally conflicted because he has been telling her that he is going to take me to court. I am an exceptional student. I am involved in many clubs and organizations, I volunteer, I am on the Dean's List, a McNair Scholar, have presented research at conferences, I sit on the University Judicial Board and was recently appointed to the Administrative Panel. I am engaged to a registered nurse who holds two degrees. Her father received his GED in 2006 while we were still a couple. No custody agreement, but he pays me $110 per month as unordered child support. He is married but has not had a job in over four years.

Related Topics:
1 Lawyer Answer
Jennifer L. Rench
Jennifer L. Rench
  • Divorce Lawyer
  • St. Louis, MO
  • Licensed in Missouri

A: The answer is complicated and very fact driven. Missouri laws address the relocation of a child, but it discusses your obligations as the proposed moving parent in terms of giving notice to "any party with custody or visitation rights." Since your question referred to "unordered child support" I assume that Father's custody rights have not been adjudicated either. That is going to be a problem for him when he tries to prevent a move, but of course it doesn't prevent him from now filing suit in court to get court order custody or visitation rights.

However, sometimes the best approach is to see what agreements can be made so that you can accomplish your goals and your child can still see her Father. Even though he is saying he will never let you move out of state, neither one of you can probably make that decision until you both gather more information about your rights, obligations and possible options. I suggest consulting with a family law attorney so that he or she can gather more facts, review your options and help you proceed in the best way that will keep the conflict low.

Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.

The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.

Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.