Can I move out of State with my Child?

May 27, 2024 | Legal Issues

Can a parent move with their minor children out of state of Florida, without the permission of the other parent?

Move out of state of Florida is a complex question and (more if there are children involved), therefore, has also a complex answer as follows. The answer to that question includes three Florida laws or statutes this way:

1. The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, which is found in Florida statutes beginning with the number 88. This law can be found and read in Florida statutes here:

2. Florida’s Relocation Statute (Florida Statute number:  61.13001). That statute can be found and read here: , y

3. The “Natural Guardians” statute (Florida statute number 744.301), which can be found and read here:

The three statutes can create confusion and a lot of uncertainty in a mother or father who wants to move out of state of Florida (or more than 50 miles away for more than 60 consecutive days) along with her/his minor child. If you moved out of state, there may be a problem if you don’t do things right, legally speaking.

Typically, what we see in our Firm for that parent to move is a job offer, or sometimes the parent has more family support where he/she is moving to, etc.

Move out of state of Florida - yourattorneyinorlando

Statute number 744.301

Then, let’s start with statute number 744.301, abbreviating it greatly what it reflects, to explain that: if a mother of a minor child is single, she has the physical custody of her minor child. This does not mean that the biological father cannot request his rights of parental responsibility, contact, etc. with the child through a paternity claim/suit and ask that the Court establish them.

Also, in the year 2023 there was a change in that statute giving the biological father same rights as the mother if an affidavit was signed by both parents showing he is the father of the child, and under other certain circumstances.

Now, under Florida Statute 744.301, both parents have the equivalent of a “shared custody” of their minor child if there is no judicial order establishing parenting rights of one parent, or the other, or both.

Of course then, as an example: a single mother (or even a married mother to the child’s father) could say: “Well, then I can move more than 50 miles away from where my child lives for more than 60 consecutive days without needing the child’s father’s permission”. However, then the other two statutes I have mentioned come into play.

Uniform Child Custody and Enforcement Act                

Under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act everything that has to do with parenting rights of a minor child is to be resolved legally in the Court of what is called the “child’s home state”. The child’s “home state” is where the child has been residing for more than 6 consecutive months.


Florida will continue to be the “minor child’s home state” for a period including the 6 months after the mother has moved the minor child with her outside Florida.

This means, in our example, that the father could then file a lawsuit in Florida requesting the establishment of his parenting rights within the 6 months when the mother and the minor child are getting settled in the new state or territory, forcing the mother to defend the lawsuit in Florida, along with the costs and expenses of transportation, etc., required to defend the case in Florida.

Florida Relocation Statute

HOWEVER, in our example above, if the father files a case in Court asking that his parenting rights be established BEFORE the mother moves the minor child out of Florida, or even for more than 50 miles away from the child’s residence for more than 60 consecutive days, the filing of that lawsuit or case triggers the Florida Relocation statute.

In that type of situation the mother cannot move the minor child (if she is married or not) for more than 50 miles away and for more than 60 consecutive days without FIRST following the specific steps in the Florida Relocation statute. This can be a sad situation for the moving parent because, many times, the parent does not even know that there has been a case filed in Court by the non-moving parent, therefore proceeding to move without complying with the Florida Relocation statute firs.

This combination of the three Florida statutes can cause serious legal problems to a mother or father who does not understand, or knows, how the three laws can work in conjunction and, therefore, complicate the lives of the mother or the father who proceeds to move his/her minor child without first obtaining legal advise of his/her legal options BEFORE MOVING out of state.

Move out of state of Florida without proper guidance

In our Firm we have seen, unfortunately, cases of mothers and fathers who, without knowing or understanding the statutes I mentioned, have moved their minor child for more than 50 miles of distance from the child’s residence and for more than 60 consecutive days, or have moved their minor child without considering  the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act  and have suffered serious legal consequences when a judge orders them to return the minor child to Florida.

As our reader may understand, once a parent has moved with the minor child and has settled into a new area and/or state or city and that parent’s child is going to a new school, etc., is traumatizing to have a judge order the immediate return of the minor child to Florida.

We urge you to please have a legal consult BEFORE you plan to make or make a move out of state with your minor child, with a domestic relations lawyer if you reside in Florida. I can provide you with that advise appropriately should you so choose. You can contact us by e mail and/or by phone here:                 

Law Office of Alejandro R. Lopez, P.A. 

4465 Edgewater Dr., Suite A – Orlando, Fla. 32804                                                                   

Tel.: (407) 649-1404  Fax: (407) 649-9890                                                                        

E-mail: [email protected]                                                                                       

You can also find us in our website of:

Attorney Alejandro R. Lopez