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Is it time for the 1980 Hague Convention to be revised?

The Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (“1980 Hague Convention”) is a multilateral treaty developed by the Hague Conference on Private International Law (HCCH).  There are currently 99 Contracting Parties to the 1980 Hague Convention and it is often lauded as one of, if not the most, successful international family law initiatives. 

Cuba, Paraguay and The Philippines all accede to Hague conventions

On 12 September 2018, the 125th anniversary of the Hague Conference on Private International Law, Cuba, Paraguay and the Philippines each joined Hague Conventions.

The importance of the child’s voice when enforcing orders under the 1996 Hague Convention; F and M [2018] EWHC 2106 (Fam)

Introduction

The Do's and Don’ts when relationships begin to strain abroad

DO’s

DO go and see a specialist international family lawyer in the country where you reside as soon as possible. The meeting is for information gathering and confidential. You will feel empowered by doing so.

The Supreme Court of Canada provides crucial and long awaited guidance on determining a child’s habitual residence

On Friday (20 April 2018) the Supreme Court of Canada in the case of Office of the Children's Lawyer  v. Balev 2018 SCC 16 provided crucial and long awaited guidance on determining a child’s habitual residence.  The Canadian Supreme Court has intentionally harmonized its approach with that of our own court and many others around the world.

Court of Appeal reinforces focus on the children's needs, not source of risk, in Art 13(b) 1980 Hague Convention

On 27 March 2018 Lord Justice Moylan and Lord Justice Peter Jackson handed down judgment in Re W [2018] EWCA Civ 664. It said in its first paragraph that case was “unusual” because as a consequence of immigration difficulties, the mother was willing to return with the children, but may be unable to do so due to having no right to re-enter the USA.  The father would also experience difficulty re-entering the USA if he left to visit the children.

The mother appealed an order that their children should be returned to the USA in accordance with the 1980 Hague Child Abduction Convention (potentially) without her.  

The appeal was allowed and the order that provided for the return of the children to the USA, without the Respondent mother in the event of her visa application being refused, was discharged.

Mother facing extradition from Canada for alleged child abduction

Various news outlets in Canada have reported that a Mother of two children (now aged 14 and 16) is facing the prospect of being extradited to the UK to face criminal charges of child abduction following the decision of a British Columbian Supreme Court Justice on Thursday 5 April.

Irrespective of the merits of the current application it is a salutary reminder that parental child abduction is a crime in this country.

New Practice Guidance Issued by the President - Case Management and Mediation of International Child Abduction Proceedings

On 13 March 2018, a new practice direction was issued by the President concerning Case Management and Mediation of International Child Abduction Proceedings.

 A Practice Direction tells anyone involved in judicial proceedings how to manage the case and interpret the Court rules.

Creation of new international child abduction lawyers association in Italy

Partner Helen Blackburn reports on the inaugural conference in Rome. ICALI, the newly established organisation for International Child Abduction Lawyers in Italy, held its inaugural conference in Rome on 23 November 2017.

Child abduction returns trumped by asylum claims

David Hodson, Marianna Michaelides and Lauren Bovington 

Introduction

What happens when a parent, who has abducted a child to this country and would be ordered to return the child immediately under the 1980 Hague Convention, claims asylum for themself and the child?  Which takes precedence? The English High Court has just dealt with this issue.

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