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Family Lawyer Cara Nuttall on Parent and Child living arrangements after a Divorce or Separation

Various news reports have suggested that Tom Cruise is now considering buying a property in New York and partially relocating there, in order to be closer to his daughter, Suri, following his split from wife, Katie Holmes.

During the marriage, the family were based primarily in Beverley Hills, California but as has been well-publicised, Katie positioned herself to live in New York, with Suri, following the Separation. It has been reported that Katie has purchased a home for herself and Suri in New York and has enrolled Suri in a local school in Manhattan.  

Whilst the A-list family are used to international travel, a distance of some 2,500 miles would inevitably impact upon contact and it is said that Tom hopes to alleviate this problem by acquiring a stable base himself in NYC, although it is not clear how his time will be divided between the two locations.

As specialist Children Lawyers and International Divorce Lawyers, we often deal with cases where the parents live many miles apart, or where one parent wishes to relocate, whether nationally or internationally. Maintaining contact across a long distance and/or international boundaries is always the main consideration in such cases. For parents such as Tom and Katie, for whom travel expenses presumably do not form a significant problem, this will be significantly easier than for many other parents faced with the same situation and this, coupled with flexibility in working commitments may well be why Tom elected to allow Katie to relocate. The simple fact is that in this country, if a parent wishing to relocate cannot demonstrate exactly how contact between the child and the 'left-behind' parent can and will be maintained, on a practical level, it is likely any application will be refused. It therefore always pays to do detailed research and costings for travel at an extremely early stage.