Law On Custody Jurisdiction
Custody laws are framed by the state, with each state having its own laws also known as statutes. The child’s best interests are at the heart of any court decision. The judge weighs all options when making a custody judgment. Some of these determining factors are:
- The child’s emotional, moral, material, social, and educational needs.
- The home environment that each party can offer.
- The relationship interpersonal and otherwise, of the child with each parent.
- The child’s preference, if sufficiently old enough to make a mature decision.
- Domestic violence history
- The child’s safety
The rights of a child are well protected under a plethora of US laws, some of which are the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act, the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act and the Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act. In addition there are international laws that can be enforced in any country under the enactments of the Hague Convention.
Under Custody jurisdiction law, a child cannot be moved to another state or country in pursuance of a more favorable custody order in the other state or country’s courts, or in order to get out of the confines of a custody order already in force. If custody orders or visiting orders are not in place or not already in the courts, then such orders will have to be sought in the state where the children have been residing for the prior six months.
If a custody order is already in force or if an alteration is sought, it will have to be referred to only to the courts of the state where the original order was issued. The exception is if neither parent resides in that state any longer.
If one seeks to move the children to another country, approval will have to be obtained from a court where the children actually reside, which has sole jurisdiction.
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