The Hague Convention is an international treaty that returns jurisdiction in an international child custody case to the country where the child habitually resides. Once jurisdiction is returned, the case is resolved in a court in that country based on the applicable custody laws in the country.
While it may seem simple, certain aspects of The Hague Convention can be highly contentious, and therefore the source of intense litigation. For example, what defines the “habitual residence” of the child? For this and other reasons, it is strongly recommended that you retain an attorney experienced in Hague Convention cases.
Successful Hague Convention Cases
There are several factors that can determine the outcome of a Hague Convention case:
Act quickly – The importance of fast action cannot be stressed enough. Under the law, a Hague Convention action can be commenced up to a year from the time of the child’s relocation. But that period may be enough to establish “habitual residence” in the new location. The sooner you act, the stronger your case will be.
Research the case carefully – Hague case decisions are fact-based. My firm will thoroughly research the facts in your case, using resources such as private investigators, child psychologists and other professionals when they can be helpful.
Argue the case effectively – Most judges in the U.S. are not familiar with the provisions of The Hague Convention and how to apply them in a real-life situation. I take the time to fully prepare my cases, providing clear explanations of key Hague Convention concepts in my briefs. Having litigated numerous family law cases, I understand how to make effective written and oral arguments.
Represent the client tenaciously – At my firm, I understand the stakes involved in international custody cases. I will vigorously represent you in The Hague Convention matter and in any subsequent custody litigation.