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Streamline Changes to the Wisconsin Relocation Statute

Recently, changes were made to Wisconsin Statute § 767.481 entitled, “Relocating a Child’s Residence.” The changes outlined below provide a uniform process for relocating a child’s residence when the court granted periods of placement with the child to both parents.

The changes to the relocation statutes outline a clear process. Some of the more significant changes to the relocation statute include:

  • Application of the statute to all family court actions, not just when the underlying case is a divorce proceeding.

  • Decreases the distance of the move from 150 miles or more to 100 miles or more.

  • Instead of written notice, the moving party is required to file a motion with the court with the following information:

    • Where, when and why the move is occurring and

    • A proposed new placement schedule in the event the move is approved.

  • Provides the Court a time line requiring an initial hearing on the motion within 30 days after it is filed.

  • If the non-moving party does not object, the parties can file a stipulation with the court approving the placement modification.

  • If the non-moving party objects, the court determines whether the relocation is in the child’s best interest.

The new § 767.481 provide a thoughtful and standardized process for relocating a child’s residence in Wisconsin. If you are considering relocating with your child or have questions regarding the process or the changes to this legislation, any of our Family Law Attorneys here at DeWitt can help navigate you through the changes.

About the Author

Nicole D. Williams Buttery is an attorney practicing out of our Madison office. She is a member of the Family Law practice group. Contact Nicole by email or by phone at (608) 283-5516.

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