› Real Experience
› Real Compassion
› Real Results

Super Lawyers Geoffrey Hamilton
Best Lawyers The Worlds Premier Guide
Peer Rated For Ethical Standards And Legal Ability 2016
Bar Register Preeminent Lawyers
Best Lawyers In Hawaii
Best Lawyers 2021 Hamilton and Chan LLC

Can a divorced parent leave Hawaii with their children?

On Behalf of | May 22, 2024 | Child Custody And Relocation

It can be difficult for those who divorce to transition to living independently afterward. Given the high cost of living in Hawaii, people may find it particularly difficult to maintain a similar standard of living after ending a marriage.

This is especially true when there are children, as each parent might need to maintain a multi-bedroom home, which can quickly become quite expensive. Those concerned about the practicalities of rebuilding after divorce sometimes decide to relocate to places where the cost of living is more affordable.

Can one parent in Hawaii relocate with their children following a divorce?

Relocations aren’t always appropriate

A parent hoping to relocate after a divorce in Hawaii needs to consider how that decision might impact the parental rights of their co-parent. Whether they intend to move to Molokai to be closer to family or to head back to the mainland to pursue a lower cost of living, a change of residence could negatively affect the custody arrangements for the family.

The amount of time and expense involved in traveling between the two households could make regular custody exchanges prohibitive if not impossible to arrange. The parent proposing the move typically needs to request the support of the parent who doesn’t intend to move. If one parent worries that a relocation could negatively affect their relationship with their children, they could refuse to cooperate with the relocation.

In that scenario, the case could require the intervention of the family courts. A family law judge must consider the current family circumstances, the reasoning behind the move and the impact the move might have on the children and their relationship with their other parent. If a judge believes that the move is in the best interests of the children, they might approve it. If they believe that the move could prove damaging for the children, they might refuse to allow the children to relocate.

Those who understand how the Hawaii family courts handle contentious custody matters like parental relocations can use that information when making plans for the future. Pushing back against a relocation request or presenting it to a judge in the right way could help someone preserve their relationship with their children more effectively.

FindLaw Network