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Legal Information: Pennsylvania


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Laws current as of December 15, 2023

How do I tell the other parent I want to move?

If your move will significantly harm (impair) the other parent’s ability to use (exercise) his/her custody rights, you must follow specific rules to inform him/her of your plans.

You must send a “proposed relocation notice” by certified mail, return receipt requested, to the other parent or anyone with custody rights at least sixty days before your moving day. However, if you didn’t know and couldn’t have known that far ahead, and you can’t postpone your move to give the 60-day notice, then you must send it within ten days of finding out about the move.1

In your notice, you must give the other parent the following information, if you have it:

  1. the address where you and your child will live and the mailing address if it is different;
  2. the names and ages of anyone who lives in or plans to live in your new home;
  3. the new home telephone number;
  4. the name of the new school district and school your child will attend;
  5. the date when you plan to move;
  6. the reasons why you want to move;
  7. your proposal for a revised custody and visitation schedule;
  8. any other information you think is appropriate to include;
  9. a “counter-affidavit” form that the other parent can use to object to your proposed move and any change (modification) to your existing custody order- to see what the counter-affidavit must look like, go to section 5337 of the law on our Selected Pennsylvania Statutes page, and look at section (d)(1); and
  10. a warning to the other parent that if s/he does not file in court objecting to your proposed move within 30 days after receipt of the notice, s/he can no longer object to it.2

Note: If the court kept your address confidential because of domestic violence, ask a Pennsylvania lawyer if you can leave out any of the information listed above. Go to PA Finding a Lawyer.

Even if the other parent does not object, you still have to file certain documents in court before you move.2  Go to section 5337 of the law on our Selected Pennsylvania Statutes page and look at section (e) to see what you need to file.3

1 23 Pa.C.S. § 5337(c)(1), (c)(2)
2 23 Pa.C.S. § 5337(c)(3)
3 23 Pa.C.S. § 5337(e)