Q: I recently concluded a child relocation case in a New York Supreme Court. The judge cited the proceedings and his observations during the trial. The wife admitted beating me, the husbandand and having me arrested by making a false statement to the cops, bringing our son late for visitations, etc. She stated that she placed little faith that the custodial mom would do anything to foster a relationship with the non-custodial father. Such is her hatred. To boot, the attorney for the child stated the same thing. There was never any abuse claimed by the mother or child or anyone else, but citing all the factors in Tropea v Tropea (all purely speculative, however, e.g., the school system would be better, despite her not knowing where they would live, and neither does the judge), she granted her move with our son to the West Coast. i would like to have an as normal can be relationship with him as possible; it would be just about impossible for us to see each other. The judge even suggested that she would be unaccountable in another court’s jurisdiction.
A: David’s Answer: First, if she was granted immediate permission to move, you should file an appeal along with an order to show cause to block the move while the appeal is pending. Second, certainly not fostering a relationship with the child is a big factor against her, but that in itself wouldn’t “defeat Tropea.” The reason is practical: Tropea is a weighing of all the factors against each other in an effort to determine whether the proposed move is in the child’s best interests. You’re best advised to schedule a consult with a Westchester Child Custody attorney for a full assessment.