Legal Question in Family Law in Maryland

Marraige and custody modification

My fiance lives in Chicago I want to move back to Chicago after we

marry. I currently live close to my son whose father has sole physical

custody. He is 8 years old my question is; is there anyway i can move

back to Chicago and take my son with me. My son wants to live with me

always has especially now. At what age can he make the decision and

the courts listens. The reason his father got custody was not because I

didnt have a proper home or abuse or anything. On paper his life just

looked alot better than mine...i college drop out artist....him college

grad coporate america type

Asked on 2/27/06, 9:16 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Robert Sher Wagshal and Sher

Re: Marraige and custody modification

Courts are reluctant to uproot a child from familiar surroundings unless there is a compelling reason to do so. An 8 year old can be easily influenced by a parent to say almost anything. If you file for a change of custody, the court will probably assign a social service investigator to interview the parties and any others having valuable input in the matter, and also inspect the present living accommodations, school situation, etc. If your son appears to be well cared for and doing OK in school, your chances of getting a local judge to let him go to Chicago and thereby make it difficult for his father to maintain normal contact with him aren't very good. On the other hand, if circumstances have significantly changed since the father was given custody and are adversely affecting your son, and you can present facts indicating what his living situation will be like in Chicago, you will have a better chance.

Generally speaking, a child's expression of preference for living with one parent vs. the other starts to have influence on the judge in the teen years, but each situation is different.

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Answered on 3/03/06, 9:56 am

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