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Motion for Removal or Relocation and College Tuition and Expenses

Oct 22, 2015 @ 09:41 AM — by Michael Green

Often during a divorce process or postjudgment after a divorce, one of the parties wishes to relocate out of the State of New Jersey with a child of the marriage.  If the other party does not consent to the removal of the child and if that issue is not part of a martrimonial settlement agreement, the parties will likely have to litigate this issue.  Those parties that are the parent of primary residence will have to show good cause for the removal, which may include the presence of a job or family or special services for the child in the State where the party wishes to relocate.  In addition, the party wishing to remove the child will have to have a parenting time plan in mind that allows for the other party to see the child, generally comparable with the amount of time that parent saw the child in New Jersey.

If the parties litigate the issue by filing motion papers in court, very often an expert will have to be retained to determine what is in the best interests of the child as well.  Generally, the move cannot be against the best interests of the child.  An expert will interview the parties and the child at issue to make a determination.  The Court will also likely order a plenary hearing, or mini-trial, where testimony will be taken from the parties and the expert.  The child may be interviewed by the Court in chambers as well depending on the age of the child.  

Where the issue is payment for college and tuition, generally a matrimonial settlement agreement covers that issue and how it will be dealt with by the parties.  In New Jersey, after the children have looked towards loans and grants, the parties may have an obligation to pay the costs proportional to income at the time.  In addition, they may only be responsible for what are state school expenses, depending on the child and the families' resources.  Both parties are to have a say in the choice of the college of the child in order for them to ultimately be responsible or have an obligation to pay some of the college tuition and expenses.  A relationship with the child at issue also has to be maintained with both parties as well.

If you have relocation issue or issue regarding the payment of college tuition and expenses, call Green & Associates now to set up a free consultation as to how you may best proceed with your case at 732-390-0480 or 201-242-1119.


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