Divorce Lawyers in Chandler AZ Explains Proposed Law
Arizona Senate is considering proposal that would scrap current 100-mile limit
A proposed law currently before the Arizona Senate could have a significant impact on the lives of divorced parents with custody of a child. Under the new rules, the custodial parent would have to give notice of 45 days to the other parent before moving to a new location, according to the Arizona Daily Star.
Current rules set 100-mile limit
Under current rules parents are allowed to move up to 100 miles without giving notice. That law, passed in 1994, is largely seen to put the priorities of the parent ahead of the child’s.
Critics of the current law also point to a loophole that allows parents to move even further than 100 miles. For example, a parent could move 100 miles and then quickly move another 100 miles and still be within the limits of the law despite being 200 miles from their original location.
Demographic changes are also making the existing law less compatible with current realities. Population growth in cities like Phoenix and Tucson mean that driving a child from one parent’s house to another can take significantly longer nowadays due to increased traffic. As a result, both the child’s quality of life and the time the child spends with a particular parent could be significantly reduced compared to 20 years ago.
New legislation would put child’s rights first
The bill under review, SB 1038, gets rid of this 100-mile limit and instead states that any move by a parent would require a 45-day notice. Judges, also, would only be allowed to consider what decision would be in the best interests of the child. The parent’s interest would no longer have any weight in the decision-making process.
The new legislation, however, is proving controversial. While critics acknowledge the shortcomings of the current law, they argue that SB 1038 could result in a court challenge whenever a parent decides to move.
Furthermore, tenants who are evicted from a property could have trouble finding another place to live. The new legislation states that only if a move is less than five miles away and is in the same school district can it be assumed that it will have no impact on the child’s well being. As such, parents who have been evicted would be forced to find another home address within their current school district within a matter of weeks or else risk being challenged in court by the other parent.
Understanding custody rights
While the proposed legislation has yet to become law, the issue does highlight the need for divorced parents to understand what their custody rights are within Arizona’s legal climate. A qualified family law lawyer, with particular experience in custody rights, can help parents who are worried about whether a change of address could be complicated by the other parent’s custodial rights.
Contact Our Divorce Lawyers in Chandler AZ
Regardless of how complicated your case may seem, our divorce lawyers in Chandler AZ can help. Call the Law Offices of Janice M. Palmer, P.C. at (480) 820-4771 or toll-free at (888) 352-7725 for a consultation.