Druckman v. RuscittiAnnotate this Case
The parties in this case were unmarried parents of one child. Father established himself as the child’s father with to a written acknowledgment of paternity. After Mother relocated with the child to California without Father’s consent or knowledge, Father filed a motion for the child’s return and for an award of primary custody. The district court awarded Mother primary physical custody of the child and allowed the child to remain with her in California. In making its determination, the court concluded that because the couple did not have a judicial child custody order, Nev. Rev. Stat. 125C.200, the statute governing relocation by an established custodial parent, was inapplicable in this case. The Supreme Court affirmed, holding (1) unmarried parents have equal custody rights regarding their child absent a judicial custody order to the contrary; (2) the district court did not err in finding section 125C.200 was inapplicable in this case; and (3) the district court did not abuse its discretion in awarding Mother primary physical custody and approving her relocation with the child to California based on its determination that Mother had a “good faith” reason for the move and that living with Mother in California was in the child’s best interest.