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International child custody cases are extremely complex, stressful, and time-consuming. A party who is navigating such matters will probably need to obtain proper legal representation for negotiations in foreign courts.

Multi-national marriages are far more prevalent in today’s society than ever. When children are born of these marriages, and the parents end up in divorce, it can lead to a long custody battle across borders. These custody actions are commonly known as “international relocations” or “international move-away cases.” While the first consideration of any court will always be the best interests of the child, there are a few more important considerations in international cases.

A judge will consider factors such as cultural conditions and practices in a country foreign to the child. Also, the judge will consider whether or not the proposed foreign country is a party to the Hague convention, a fact which will play a large role in protecting parental rights. Another consideration would be whether or not the proposed country has laws in place that would protect the visitation rights of the parent remaining in the United States.

International custody matters should never be navigated alone. They require specialized knowledge of laws and legal processes in multiple countries.

Most importantly, a knowledgeable attorney can make certain that all measures are in place to protect both the child and the visitation rights of a parent left behind.

Last, but certainly not least, be aware that international matters are no fast moving process. Even with adequate legal representation, they often take up to a year to complete. Some international parents have even relocated to a foreign country to prevent missing so much of their child’s life while awaiting closure on a custody matter.