Does moving post-divorce change the jurisdiction?

divorce attorney Jill DuffyQuestion:

Our divorce and child support order was entered in one state (Missouri) where I currently live. My ex-wife and children now live in another state (Indiana) and I am about to move to another state as well (Michigan).

How do I go about changing which state will handle the child support and parenting plan? I am confused as to which state should have jurisdiction?


Dealing with child support when multiple states are involved can be confusing. The Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA) will govern enforcement and changes to child support orders. Both Michigan and Indiana will recognize the order entered in Missouri as a valid child support order. It could be entered in either state for enforcement purposes.

The place where the order was originally entered (Missouri, in your case) holds continuing exclusive jurisdiction (CEJ) to make decisions regarding child support in your case, and only the law of that state can be applied to requests to modify the order of child support, unless Missouri loses CEJ under the Act. Missouri may not have authority to make a child support modification because your children have lived in Indiana for over six months.

UIFSA allows both parties to agree in writing that a state where one of them lives may take control of the case and change the support amount.

If you and your former spouse cannot agree on a state, then to change the order you must register the order for modification in the state where your former spouse lives (Indiana).

You should contact an attorney who is licensed in your jurisdiction to further discuss the specifics of your situation. Cordell & Cordell does represent men in divorce nationwide. Thank you for submitting your question.


Jill A. Duffy is an Associate Attorney in the Troy, Mich., office of Cordell & Cordell. She is licensed to practice in the state of Michigan. Ms. Duffy received her BA in Psychology and Spanish and graduated Magna Cum Laude from Oakland University. She received her Juris Doctor from Michigan State University College of Law and graduated Magna Cum Laude.

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