Same-sex parents, after separation, had joint custody and an agreed parenting-time schedule for their two minor children, twins with autism. Appellee moved the trial court to allow her to move from Lexington, Kentucky to St. Joseph, Missouri area. The court granted her motion allowing relocation finding Missouri had better services for autistic children.
The Court of Appeals remanded the case for further proceedings, concluding that the trial court failed to address whether or not the relocation would serve the children’s best interests. While the trial court looked to services that might be available in Missouri it did not consider or compare the services the children are actually utilizing in Lexington. Moreover, the evidence presented about services available to the children did not relate specifically to them, was from varying counties in Missouri, and did not identify the actual benefit of the service to the children. Additionally, while the court found that relocation would benefit the Appellee, there was no finding it would benefit the children themselves.
Digested by Elizabeth M. Howell