Sometimes a situation arises with parents in the Portland metro area where they are trying to decide where to live, between the Vancouver area or the greater Portland area. If you are anticipating a custody fight with your spouse, the choice of where to live can have a significant impact on the outcome of your child’s routine and life.
Moving Between Oregon and Washington During or For a Divorce or Custody Case: Does it Change Anything?
First, absent emergencies or abnormal circumstances, jurisdiction can only lie in a state where the child has lived for the last 6 months. That means that if your case is about to start, and you can’t delay it, it does not help you to move to Portland from Vancouver or vice versa at the eleventh hour. If you have questions about jurisdiction, meaning which state you can bring your case in, you should consult with an attorney immediately to find out more on how to proceed with your case.
If you are in a situation where you have the luxury of planning a move knowing a divorce or custody case is going to happen in the future, the impact of the different states’ laws on custody and parenting time decisions should be considered. As the laws differ, for some people it will be better to litigate in Washington, and for some Oregon. An attorney licensed in both states is the only reliable source for advice on how that decision can impact your children’s lives. So before making a decision about a move in order to change divorce or custody outcomes please consult with an attorney that can guide you on if that will be a good move for your individual situation.
If you are planning a move out of Oregon or Washington and already have a parenting plan in place you may find the article Moving Out of State with a Parenting Plan in Oregon or Washington helpful.