International Family Law


International Family Law pin map As a result of our global society, many families are moving around the world. International marriages and relationships are becoming more and more common. Simultaneously, International Family Laws developed by governments around the world are becoming interwoven with culture and religion. Knowing which state’s or country’s laws apply to an international marital dissolution, custody or support matter can be complex. The attorneys at the Milford, Michigan law office of Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates understand International Family Law. If you are involved in a complex International child custody situation, please contact a lawyer from our firm to learn how we can help.

International Family Law

It can be a terrible thing when a parent removes a child from the country he or she has lived in since birth. International Child Abductions (parental kidnapping) have increased in recent years. We have witnessed much media attention in cases such as the Sean Goldman case. His case has been very important in bringing Child Abduction and International Family Law issues on a global scale to the public’s attention. Prompt action is required when a child is unlawfully removed from his home country.

Hague Convention and International Family Law

The Hague Convention is a treaty the United States entered into with several other countries. When a family is involved in an international child-cuslist of hague convention countriestody dispute, the Hague Convention will apply if both countries are parties to the treaty. The Hague Convention was designed to protect children from being wrongfully removed across international borders by providing an international procedure for the children’s prompt return to their country of “habitual residence.”

For more information, see our related blogs:
Rutherford International Custody Battle Continues
UPDATE – New Strategy in Rutherford’s Custody Battle
Divorced Parents’ Applying for Children’s Passports

A case of International Family Law is controlled by the 1980 Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. This convention is an effort by the global community to address the issue of International Child Abduction. The document generated by the multi-national convention attempted to create global standards that would govern the actions of governments and courts in international custody disputes. The primary goal of the convention document is to protect “children internationally from the harmful effects of their wrongful removal or retention and to establish procedures to ensure their prompt return to the state of their habitual residence.” The Convention applies to any child who was habitually a resident in a Contracting State immediately before any breach of custody or access rights. The Convention shall cease to apply when the child attains the age of 16 years.

What Specifically Does This International Family Law State?

Article 1. The objects of the present Convention are:

  • a. to secure the prompt return of children wrongfully removed to or retained in any Contracting State; and
  • b. to ensure that rights of custody and of access under the law of one Contracting State are effectively respected in the other Contracting States.

Article 2. The Contracting States shall take all appropriate measures to secure within their territories the implementation of the objects of the Convention. For this purpose, they shall use the most expeditious procedures available.

Article 3. The removal or the retention of a child is to be considered wrongful where:

  • a. it is in breach of rights of custody attributed to a person, an institution or any other body, either jointly or alone, under the law of the State in which the child was habitually resident immediately before the removal or retention; and
  • b. at the time of removal or retention, those rights were actually exercised, either jointly or alone, or would have been so exercised but for the removal or retention.

The International Family Law attorneys of Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates understand the Hague Convention laws regarding Child Abduction and we can help you with your International Family Law questions.
Contact Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates at 248-676-1000 or visit our Milford, Michigan office to learn about your rights.

Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates have many satisfied clients throughout the five counties of Southeastern Michigan – OaklandWashtenaw, Wayne, Genesee and Livingston. The Michigan Family Law Attorneys of Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates have one simple objective: to handle our clients’ legal worries so they can concentrate on life and family. Contact Kathryn Wayne-Spindler & Associates today to learn more about our experience and success at 248-676-1000. We are conveniently located in Milford, Michigan. We help clients throughout Milford; Highland; Hartland; White Lake; Commerce; Waterford; West Bloomfield; Walled Lake; South Lyon; New Hudson; Wixom; Linden; Holly; Fenton; Grand Blanc; Flint and many more local communities.

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