My wife just filed for divorce. I already had plans to take my child out of state over the holidays to visit my family.
Am I allowed to take my kid out of state once a divorce has been filed?
You should have received a Standing Temporary Order for Family Law Cases with Minor Children with the divorce papers. Although each county in Florida has a different version of the Standing Order, many counties have language which does not allow either party to remove, cause to be removed, or permit the removal of any minor child of the parties from their current county of residence for residential purposes without written agreement of both parties or an order of the Court.
From the details of your question, it appears you wish to only take your son out of state over the holidays for a visit, not to relocate. Therefore, such language in the Standing Order would not preclude you from taking your son out of state for a holiday vacation. You will need to review the Order you received.
Having said that, it would still be advisable for you to obtain a written agreement from the mother stating she does not intend to protest your trip to visit your family with your son. If she is not agreeable, she could try to prevent you from taking your son by requesting an emergency hearing on the matter.
Therefore, it is in your best interest to create an agreement with her now. You should let her know that it is your understanding that you have visitation over the holidays and provide her with all relevant travel information, the itinerary, and contact information so that she may reach your son while you are out of state.
You should contact a domestic litigation attorney licensed in your area. Cordell & Cordell has attorneys who are licensed and located in Florida who would be happy to discuss your case with you.
Alison K. Morriss is a Staff Attorney in the Tampa, Florida office of Cordell & Cordell, where she practices domestic relations exclusively. Ms. Morriss is licensed to practice law in the state of Florida. Ms. Morriss received her Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies, History and Business Administration from Stetson University. She continued her education and received her Juris Doctor from Stetson University College of Law, and her Master of Business Administration from Stetson University School of Business.