Can an unwed father block the move of his kids out of state?

mens divorce lawyer Janet Yu JohnstonQuestion:

My fiancée and I would like to move to another state. She has two children with a man that she was never married to.

Does he have any legal right to prevent us from moving with the children since he was never married to the mother?


The answer to your question depends on a few factors, such as whether the father of the children has custody and/or parenting time with the children, and whether there is currently a custody decree that might prevent such a move.

In Kentucky (where I practice), there is also a Family Court Rule of Procedure and Practice that requires any parent moving with the children out of state to give notice to the other parent at least 60 days prior to such move and holding that no relocation of the children shall occur unless the court enters an order modifying the status quo.

I would recommend that your fiancée speak with an attorney about this move, as it is possible that she may need to file an agreed order or motion to modify the current custody or time sharing agreement.

I cannot give you specific legal advice as I am not familiar with the facts of your case. For a more in-depth answer, please consult a family law attorney in your jurisdiction.

Cordell & Cordell has men’s divorce lawyers located nationwide.


Janet Yu Johnston is an Associate Attorney in the Louisville, Kentucky office of Cordell & Cordell, where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Johnston is licensed to practice law in the states of Indiana and Kentucky. Ms. Johnston received her Bachelor of Arts in both English and Foreign Lanugage/International Studies from Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky. She later received her Juris Doctor from University of Louisville, Brandeis School of Law.

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