With the increase of relationships that cross country borders, it is not surprising that there is also an increase in international custody disputes in Massachusetts. At the Law Offices of Andrew S. Guisbond we often assist clients with the relocation or illegal removal of children to another country. 

According to Domaine, it is critical to understand child custody laws if you are afraid your ex could unlawfully take your child out of the country. Many of these statutes can protect the child and help ensure his or her safe return. There are also steps you can take to get your child back. 

Familiarize yourself with the Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction if your child is in one of the jurisdictions that have signed the convention. This international treaty, also known as the Hague Convention, exists expressly to protect children under 16 from international abductions. 

There are cultural and religious issues that can impact your case. Some jurisdictions prefer granting sole physical custody to mothers, while others give priority to fathers. Understanding the country’s preference can help you address the issues in a foreign court more effectively. 

You can also be pro-active if you have concerns about the potential for a custody-related abduction. The Uniform Child Abduction Prevention Act (UCAPA) offers specific protections. Once you file a petition siting your particular concerns, a judge can limit your ex’s ability to remove your child from the country. 

An attorney experienced in resolving international custody cases can help ensure timely and fair court proceedings. If you do not know where your ex lives, they may help find him or her and negotiate the safe, voluntary return of your child. Visit our webpage for more information on this topic.