Kudos to Anne Argiroff, Michigan appellate lawyer. She recently prevailed in the Court of Appeal in Eickelberg v Eickelberg, a relocation case. Eickelberg was decided on January 27, 2015 [Docket No. 318840] and was approved for publication on March 19, 2015.
After the Plaintiff Mother filed for divorce and prior to entry of judgment in 2010, Mr. Eickelberg moved from Clinton Township to Perry, Michigan. This was a move of 86 miles. Mrs. Eickelberg was awarded custody and Mr. Eickelberg was awarded parenting time that included a mid-week parenting time.
The parties did not get along and a parenting coordinator was appointed. After Mr. Eickelberg moved from Perry to Marshall, Michigan, Mother filed a motion to terminate the PC and also challenged the father's move to Marshall--about 126 miles from the home where she and the children remained. She alleged that his move violated MCL 722.31, commonly known in Michigan as "the 100-mile rule." Father filed a motion to eliminate the mid-week parenting time and to increase his summer parenting time.
At a hearing on the motions, the trial court denied Mother's motions and granted those of Father. The judge focused on the fact that he had not moved more than 100 miles from Perry so he was good to go. A myriad of other orders were entered--sounds as though the judge was pretty frustrated by all of the contention between the parties. Mother appealed and won in the court of appeal, which remanded for a hearing consistent with the framework of Rains v Rains, 301 Mich App 313, 325; 836 NW2d 709 (2013).
The COA basically said "It is what it is!" The 100-mile rule is really clear. The trial judge erred by not enforcing it. That rule is interpreted to mean 100 miles "as the crow flies." MCL 722.31(1) provides as follows:
A child whose parental custody is governed by court order has, for the purposes of this section, a legal residence with each parent. Except as otherwise provided in this section, a parent of a child whose custody is governed by court order shall not change a legal residence of the child to a location that is more than 100 miles from the child’s legal residence at the time of the commencement of the action in which the order is issued.
You may also review Rains v Rains here: Download Rains_v_Rains
See also Hannah, Jeanne M. ABA 2014 Spring Family Law Conference materials on relocation: Download RELOCATIONS-Hannah