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Dealing With Your Ex Partner and Child Moving Away

By: Chris Nickson - Updated: 17 Aug 2019 | comments*Discuss
 
Separated Dads Ex-partner Child Moving

We all know that lives change. In a society that’s become more and more mobile, moving homes, moving cities and even countries, has become fairly commonplace. But if your kids live with your former partner and she has to move away, how do you deal with that?

The move could be work related, or perhaps because her new partner has a job somewhere else, at the other end of the country. What are the ramifications?

Within The UK

An awful lot is going to depend on the type of relationship you have with your ex. If it’s good, then when she moves you’ll be able to re-negotiate contact with your children. It might be that you don’t see them as often, but when you do it’s for a longer period.

If they’ve been spending a few nights a week with you, it can be especially bad, since you won’t have their presence regularly, which you’re used to. But your ex isn’t legally obliged to live near you.

If the relationship is bad, you might need to apply for a change in your Contact Order. This can be a gruelling procedure, not to mention expensive, since you’ll want to have a solicitor to represent you, although you may be able to come to an Agreement Through Mediation. You will still be expected to Pay Child Support as before.

Emotional Impact

Perhaps the biggest factor to deal with is the emotional impact. You should arrange plenty of phone contact with your children, daily if at all possible, so they still feel that you’re involved in their lives (and so you feel that way, too) and try to see them as often as possible. If you can arrange a trip to see them once a month, that’s good, but not economically viable for many people.

School holidays would be the best time to see them, when you might be able to have them for a week – or even several weeks in the summer, if you can negotiate this. Of course, wonderful as it sounds, the practicalities can be real obstacles; after all, you still have to work, and there’s only so much holiday time you can take each year. You need to try to find a balance that works for you.

Going Abroad

But what happens if your ex wants to Move Abroad with your kids? She might be a foreign national, for example, and want to move home, or she might have married someone from another country and be moving. What can you do in the situation where your kids are taken even farther away from you?

Essentially, you have two choices. You can either accept the fact and come to some agreement about when the children can spend time with you or you can fight the move in the courts. If you follow the first route and come to an agreement, have it in writing and legally validated. It should include the number of visits per year and their length. Also, make sure to include who is responsible for airfares, which can avoid tumultuous arguments later. If you’re paying child support, you should try to have a provision saying you don’t have to pay for the period the kids are living with you.

Should you choose to fight the move in court, you will be battling for custody of your kids. This is only going to work if you have parental responsibility for the children (that is, if you’re named as the father on the birth certificate or have a parental responsibility agreement). If not, it’s not worth the effort, because you won’t win.

Rather than the distress this will cause you, what you’ll need to show is how it will adversely affect the kids. If the proposed move is to a non English-speaking country, for example, and your children are in school and have grown up speaking English, you’ll want to cite that – especially if they are in their early teens. You’ll need to develop a valid argument, preferably several, and be well represented in court.

If your ex does move the kids overseas, you’ll feel the loss even more than if they’re just elsewhere in the UK. Use as many different methods of contact as you can to keep in touch with them, daily if possible. It’s not an ideal substitute, but it really is better than nothing at all.

Check out the Separated Dads Forum... It's a great resource where you can ask for advice on topics including Child Access, Maintenance, CAFCASS, Fathers Rights, Court, Behaviour or simply to have a chat with other dads.

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[Add a Comment]
The Law is an ass, and when it stop allowing women to take the piss the way they do, our world will be a better place. I haven’t seen my children for over 4 weeks and went round to see them, only to find they have moved. That’s great now what do I do now...
Omes law - 14-Aug-19 @ 12:50 PM
Can anyone help me? My ex wife is trying to move my daughter to another school, only a few miles apart, but my daughter is in her last year or so of primary school and is working towards her Sats next year. It has majorly upset my daughter and I have concerns over the effect it is having on her and her schooling, as at present she is excelling! I know mediation won’t work and I’m not shore what legally I can do?? Can anyone please help?? Thanks.
Shaun - 9-Jul-19 @ 2:57 PM
Can my x move away even if I have a court order saying I have my child every Wednesday and every weekend, plus my daughter wants to live with me and not hermother
Dean - 8-Jul-19 @ 7:56 PM
This is one of the worst articles I've ever read on this subject. You can do plenty if your ex-partner is wanting to move away. If your child is ised to regular weekday contact with you this is viewed as a high priority to maintain. Currently in the courts relocations within the UK are treated very similarly to international cases. SPEAK TO A LAWYER. And once you've done so representing yourself is definitely an option. This article should be removed!
Lyeates - 3-Jun-19 @ 6:50 AM
Husbands ex wife has moved my stepson (8) a 4.5 hour drive away, with the agreement of him coming down every other Saturday until Sunday evening (we used to have him every Friday & every other Saturday) and in the half terms. The agreement over phone/text was that she will bring him down every other weekend and in the half terms. She has been gone 6 weeks and he has only been down for 4 nights (during Easter half term) she has already gone back on the agreement, stating ‘I haven’t got any plans as of yet’, and throwing other arguments/money problems at him, even though they have nothing to do with him. We have 2 children, soon to be 3 living with us, so money is tight for a solicitor and hefty court fees, and I am unsure of where to go next?
El - 23-Apr-19 @ 6:00 PM
TE speak to supportgroup families need fathers.. They will be able to offer you decent advice.
Aw - 8-Apr-19 @ 10:21 PM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 3:40 PM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 3:18 PM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 3:15 PM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 11:58 AM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 10:39 AM
Hi there, I have a 7 year old daughter who lives with my ex wife. My ex has a partner with whom she has 2 other children under 3 years old. She has just informed me they wish to move to a new area 200 miles away to be close to her extended family, citing improved quality of life for my daughter, and support from her parents. After we separated nearly 5 years ago my ex moved from our shared home to a new town 70 miles away, without seeking my permission or telling me until the last minute. I bought a house the following year in the next town to where she lived specifically to be close to my daughter and to provide us with a stable home life on her visits and have had access in the form of one overnight stay with my daughter every second weekend since, and wereached a good equilibrium. My work does not allow me to move away from where I live, it is not portable, and buying a house in the new area does not seem feasible. This new proposed move will therefore severely impact the time my daughter can spend with me- either I will have to travel there and find lodging in a hotel or air bnb (financially prohibitive), or my daughter will have to perform a 200 mile round trip every other weekend to maintain current levels of contact. I have parental responsibility, please could you tell me what my rights are, and can I prevent the proposed move, and can she push it through via courts? Also, in anticipating that she will likely be allowed to move, can you give me any advice as to my rights about travel expenses and hotel/air bnb costs or my ability to demand my ex share travel time/cost with me? Can I deduct costs from child maintenance, or claim costs back? Pleased to hear, thank you!
TE - 4-Mar-19 @ 10:06 AM
Hi my ex ran off with my 3 sons to Manchester from London. No contact for 2 years then out of blue we hve contact reconcile then because she can't be bothered to work behind my back moves a man into her house cutting all contact. Any advise pls
50 - 28-Feb-19 @ 3:56 PM
Hey, I want to move 2 hours away with my son and I’m willing to travel every weekend so my ex can see our son but I’m being told I’m being taken to court if I move with him? Can my ex stop us from leaving a town where there is no jobs, not a decent schooling? I’m willing to pay the train fair ever other week so my ex can see our son. Please someone help me I’m so anxious
Cait - 25-Feb-19 @ 11:46 PM
So ex has moved 130miles away with the kids and won’t bring them half way to help me out anyone been able to get a court order to get this to happen?
Jonesy - 13-Jan-19 @ 7:48 PM
Hi I'm wanting to move away and have agreed to bring my son to his dads every two weeks instead of him going every week as it's going to be a long way to travel back and forth every week My sons dad is saying he is taking me to court for moving away and says he can't travel to get his son due to having another child which is why I said I would travel every two weeks with my son I don't know what to do as I'm wanting to move to make mine and my sons life better as there is nothing where I live for my son to do and I can't find work where I live that is flexible around school hours Any advice on what to do ladies
Curious mammy - 24-Dec-18 @ 3:30 PM
My husbands ex wife has moved house,without telling him. There is no injunction on him. Sadly he only sees one of his children, following a very horrible court hearing. Ex wife got very upset when the school put her address on a school report and has denied moving. It is only by fluke he has found out that she has moved. Can she just move without informing him,she has coached the youngest to lie. There were so many indications that they had moved.
AP - 18-Dec-18 @ 6:50 PM
I love with my partner who has a child from a previous relationship. The father refuses to travel and drop her off on sundays saying we have to travel to collect. His responsibility is two weekends a month..... We do everything else IE fetch carry school etc etc . He moved away from the town after the split which was his choice. Every Sunday becomes a slog where we have to negotiate with him to pick her up as he won’t Travel to us. Am I being unreasonable thinking that perhaps we aught to take responsibility and travel. He only has 6 nights a month to deal with.
Clint - 14-Dec-18 @ 10:24 AM
Hi All, my ex and I separated in 2011, we have two boys together - 13 and 9. she has done everything in her power to keep them away from me, she changed her landline number, she would take away the ipad i bought for the younger kid so we can facetime, she would take a way the older boy's mobile phone for weeks at a time. now she has decided to move them to Nigeria, put them in school and she has returned to the country. The solicitors claim they can do very little because Nigeria is not a member state of the Hague Convention treaty. Please, what are my options?
joey - 15-Nov-18 @ 11:53 AM
Hi, my partner has been separated from his ex for 2 years. They have two girls together and she also has a daughter from a previous relationship who has been raised by my partner as the biological father isn’t present. The ex went away to Scotland for school half term this week and has decided not to return home. This is a total shock and very upsetting for my partner. I know he has parental rights for his biological daughters as he is on their birth certificates but not for his ex’s daughter. We are unsure of his rights - I understand he can apply for a court order but after reading the Gov website there is a requirement to attend mediation beforehand, what happens if the ex doesn’t agree to mediation? Can you apply for a court order without mediation? Does my partner have any rights over his non-biological daughter? Or can he obtain rights? I’m not sure what the girls will do about school as I don’t think she has informed their current schools. Should my partner contact the school?
MissE - 4-Nov-18 @ 10:50 PM
@m1531.i tell you why she is allowed to get away with it .because she has a fanny they are like koala bears protected species boy .if they didn’t have fanny you would throw rocks at them .i no I would .
Big Donny - 18-Oct-18 @ 12:14 AM
Hi My Ex partner has moved, without telling me, and now I have no idea where my daughter is, she has always made contact as difficult as. Possible, and the last time I saw my daughter was over twelve months ago. I have no idea where to send court papers to get her back in to court Does anyone. Know if I apply for. Court on her old. Address if the court will track her down... Or will they simply return my application and say its the incorrect address. I can't believe she's just allowed to do this Many thanks Mark
M1531 - 17-Oct-18 @ 10:37 PM
Hi I have been with my girlfriend for 15 years and have a 4 year old and a 6 year old (year 2). I am English, she is Scottish. She moved to England for me when we got together and has always missed her family and wanted to move back ther, which I don’t want to do. She has no family around her here so if she stayed here she would be on her own bringing up our kids. My family are really close by but are elderly and unable to help out on a regular basis. My siblings rarely see my kids despite living locally. Can my girlfriend take my kids to live in Scotland with her even though I have parental responsibility? I have had gambling problems and didn’t take help despite my partner asking me too and am worried that will affect my power to stop her movin. Any advice would be gratefully received. Thanks
L - 13-Oct-18 @ 10:56 PM
I've been separated for 10 years with my daughter who is 14 and my son who is 11. My ex partner moved 40 miles away 10 years ago. Over all of this time there have been ups and downs and I have always my two every other weekend and holidays. However I've never had a good relationship with my ex since separation. I struggled during the recession and only moved to be within a few miles of the kids mother a few years ago but commute 40 miles up north every day. I had hoped to see an improvement in communication but this has never happened. All my communciation is directly with my children now however I am at the point of asking myself why I moved. I simply feel as though I'm used or available just in case and have an increainsly diminishing importance in the lives of my own children. It's seems as though it's now not important if my children even see me at times when it's quite easy to not see Dad then that's what happens :-(. I suck it up but it's really getting to me now how things have diminished. I am wondering about moving back up north if things deteriorate much further. Any advice?
Roy - 4-Oct-18 @ 8:33 PM
I've been separated for 10 years with my daughter who is 14 and my son who is 11. My ex partner moved 40 miles away 10 years ago. Over all of this time there have been ups and downs and I have always my two every other weekend and holidays. However I've never had a good relationship with my ex since separation. I struggled during the recession and only moved to be within a few miles of the kids mother a few years ago but commute 40 miles up north every day. I had hoped to see an improvement in communication but this has never happened. All my communciation is directly with my children now however I am at the point of asking myself why I moved. I simply feel as though I'm used or available just in case and have an increainsly diminishing importance in the lives of my own children. It's seems as though it's now not important if my children even see me at times when it's quite easy to not see Dad then that's what happens :-(. I suck it up but it's really getting to me now how things have diminished. I am wondering about moving back up north if things deteriorate much further. Any advice?
Roy - 4-Oct-18 @ 7:41 PM
Please advise, Me and my ex wife divorce almost 2 years ago, she agreed to have my daughter full time. I agreed to let her see her daughter every now and than because she had plans to marry some on in Ireland. Later on she asked me to if she could take her to Ireland with her until she starts school, i! I've been talking to my daughter every other day, she promised to bring her back and has been making excuses, end off she isn't answering any calls even blocked me. What do I do know? What are my rights in this. Please advice.
Ray - 21-Sep-18 @ 11:36 PM
Mike - Your Question:
Hi, my ex has just taken my 9 year old girl to live 70 miles away in wales without letting me know. I found out as her school rang me to ask why she was absent and they couldn't get hold of her and when I did she informed she has moved to Wales. Is this classed as kidnap. I'm unsure what to do. I provide everything for my little girl and look after her 60/70% of the time. I've sent off for her birth certificate to see if I'm on it which should give me rights. I've no idea where she's going to be living in Wales and she's taken her out of school and apparently moved her to another school in Wales. Also it's her birthday next wk and I've planned to take her to Berlin, Germany to a zoo she's always wanted to go to. I'm afraid if I contest her moving there she'll stop me taking her to Berlin which ive already paid for, can she do this? Please help I'm devastated

Our Response:
I am sorry to hear this. If your ex has moved your child out of the area and you have parental responsibility (registered on the birth certificate), your ex should have asked for your consent to move your child away. You would be able to apply directly to court, please see the link here . Our Separated Dads forum may be of help to you if you need additional advice regarding this matter. With regards to your holiday with your child, you would have to have permission from your ex to take your child out of the country, please see the link here.
SeparatedDads - 7-Sep-18 @ 2:11 PM
Hi, my ex has just taken my 9 year old girl to live 70 miles away in wales without letting me know. I found out as her school rang me to ask why she was absent and they couldn't get hold of her and when I did she informed she has moved to Wales. Is this classed as kidnap. I'm unsure what to do. I provide everything for my little girl and look after her 60/70% of the time. I've sent off for her birth certificate to see if I'm on it which should give me rights. I've no idea where she's going to be living in Wales and she's taken her out of school and apparently moved her to another school in Wales. Also it's her birthday next wk and I've planned to take her to Berlin, Germany to a zoo she's always wanted to go to. I'm afraid if I contest her moving there she'll stop me taking her to Berlin which ive already paid for, can she do this?Please help I'm devastated
Mike - 5-Sep-18 @ 10:04 PM
p41 - Your Question:
Hi, Any advice please. My wife has recently had a breakdown and tried to take her own life. She went to stay with her dad in a different area to get the support she needed to get better - and is currently still there. I have remained in the house with our three girls aged 4, 7 and 10. There school is here and friends and my family. I am considering going for custody - with the hope I will get full residency - Does anyone know of similar stories - Will I have a chance or will she e more likely to win residency.

Our Response:
Much depends upon the circumstances and how long you have been looking after the children for. In this case, I suggest you seek legal advice as if your ex doesn't agree then you would have to take the matter to court. As in all cases, the court’s main concern is the welfare of the children in question. The court will always put the children’s best interests first and this main issue will determine the outcome of any application for an order.
SeparatedDads - 4-Sep-18 @ 12:18 PM
Advice please. I am a lone father and my 6 year old son lives with me. I refused to return my son to his mother at the end of weekend contact after receiving a call from the police saying she had been arrested and I should wait till social services got in touch. Long and short of it, social services verdict was "if I return my son to his mother, they would seek legal advice to remove him and take him into care as the events surrounding the child would result in a second bout of child protection at under 3 years of age" that was 3 years ago. I love having my son live with me, twice the work, twice the reward. She has never contested the fact legally or otherwise that I should return him. She has paid zero towards maintenance and continues to be a degenerated alcoholic. contact has been hit and miss and I've now stopped all contact apart from my sons occasional desire to call his mum, and I grant him that every time. (It's not his fault his mum is crap) I now have an offer on the table to go and stay with my parents for 2 years in Northern Ireland to help them build a house. The outcome would mean I'd have a deposit to put down on buying a house for me and my son back here where we currently live (south England) What do I need to do, to do this legally. I know she will say no, just out of pure evil obstruction. Regardless that this would secure a home and inheritance for her son. Realistically, how much will it cost to do this legally, and how long will it take? Many thanks in advance.
Cheezy - 2-Sep-18 @ 8:33 AM
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