September 25, 2005
Case Law Development: Relocation and Joint Physical Custody Arrangements
When parents have agreed to joint physical custody, what standard should be applied if one of the parents wishes to relocate with the child? Reversing the trial court's approval of mother's relocation with child, the Supreme Court of Nevada holds that the state’s relocation statute does not apply to parties who share joint physical custody of their minor children. Rather, if one parent in a joint physical custody arrangement wants to move out of state with the children, the parent must first file for a change of custody. The district court must then determine whether the best interests of the children are better served by living outside of Nevada with the relocating parent as the primary physical custodian or living in Nevada with the nonmoving parent having primary physical custody. The court declined a request by amicus the Nevada Bar Family Law Section to more clearly define joint physical custody.
Potter v. Potter, 2005 Nev. LEXIS 72; 121 Nev. Adv. Rep. 60 (September 22, 2005)
Opinion on the web at http://www.leg.state.nv.us/scd/121NevAdvOpNo60.pdf (last visited September 24, 2005 bgf)