– from Ralph T. in West Milwaukee, WI

Question Details:

The mother of my daughter and I were never married. We never went to court for custody or anything. My daughter lived with her mother for the first year after we split up while she moved around. When times got really tough for them, my daughter came to live with me. My ex continues to move from state to state with no real residence. Now she wants to go to court for custody. I'm not too worried about losing custody, since she has no real residence. It’s the visitations I'm worried about. Can the court restrict the geographic location of the visitations?

Family Law Attorney Response:

Absolutely. This is well within the discretion authority of a child custody court.

This is seen in the case of G.R.S. v. J.R.G. (In re Custody of L.J.G.) 141 Wis. 2d 503, 415 N.W.2d 564 (Ct. App. 1987). In this case, similar circumstances were present and the court restricted visitation to Wisconsin. The mother appealed, and the court of appeals affirmed. I don't know the specifics of your case, but if the mother travels from state to state and you are established, I don't see you having trouble gaining custody.

However, you still may want to consider obtaining legal representation before moving forward with your case.

Trisha Festerling, J.D.

Family Law Attorney

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