- Elon Musk says Grimes is trying to avoid Texas courts in their custody battle, court records show.
- Musk said while he has his son X, Grimes moved the other two kids to California this year.
- Where the case plays out could have major consequences on potential child support orders.
Elon Musk accused Grimes of moving with two of their kids to California this year in order to avoid the custody battle playing out in Texas, according to court documents obtained by Insider.
Musk initially sued Grimes in Texas in September to “establish the parent-child relationship” with the three kids the pair share.
Weeks later, Grimes countersued Musk in California seeking physical custody of the children. She told a Texas judge in October that Musk had custody of their three-year-old son, X Æ A-Xii, over her objection.
Family law experts previously told Insider that the first fight in the case would likely be over which state had jurisdiction: California or Texas. The outcome of that fight could have major consequences for Musk, thanks to the different child support caps in California and Texas.
Texas caps monthly child support payments at $2,760 for three children, which is how many Musk and Grimes share. California however has no limit, meaning a person like Musk — the richest in the world — could be ordered to pay an extremely high amount.
On Monday, Musk filed an amended petition stating that Texas was the proper jurisdiction for their custody battle because it was the children’s home state when his initial petition was filed.
The petition also said Grimes has claimed to be a nonresident of Texas “in an apparent attempt to circumvent the jurisdiction of this Court.” While many of the specific dates in the petition have been redacted, it says that at some point in 2023, Grimes moved to California with two of the kids and has not returned to Texas.
X, who is frequently pictured with Musk in public, remains with this father in Texas, the petition said.
Despite acknowledging that Grimes and two of the kids are currently in California, the petition says that she and the three children had resided in Texas, primarily with Musk, for at least consecutive six months, thus making it their home state.
However, in Grimes’ countersuit, she said the three children had been living with her in California since December 31 of last year.
The date that Grimes and the children moved to California could impact which state is considered their home state, and therefore where the case plays out.
Peter Walzer, a partner of Walzer Melcher with expertise in complicated and high-net-worth family law cases, noted Musk’s petition cites the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act and the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act — agreements between states that dictate where custody and support cases should play out.
States have different versions of these acts, but both California’s and Texas’s UCCJEA say the child’s home state is the one where they have lived for six consecutive months prior to the custody proceedings. Walzer said Musk and Grimes could spend months just trying to prove which state the kids actually lived in.
Lawyers for Musk and Grimes did not respond to Business Insider’s requests for comment.