Your former spouse enjoys taking your 10-year-old son Huey on weekend nature outings. However, he has finally gone too far.
Without your permission, he has taken Huey to see Niagara Falls—from the Canadian side. Does the Hague Convention play a role here?
About the Hague Convention
The Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is a treaty that took effect in 1983. As of 2019, 101 states, including Canada, have agreed to uphold the terms of the treaty. The goal of the Convention is to preserve a child custody arrangement that was in place prior to the alleged wrongful removal of the child from one member country to another. The Convention can help protect children from abduction across international borders by working toward the prompt return of a child to his or her country of habitual residence.
Filing a case
If you have reason to believe that taking Huey to Toronto to see Niagara Falls was an excuse to keep the child in Canada where your ex-spouse has a second home, you may wish to consider filing a case with the Convention. The case must present certain information:
- That Huey is a habitual resident of the U.S., as one Convention country, and wrongfully removed to Canada, another Convention country
- That the removal of your child violates your custodial rights
- That your child is under the age of 16
Given the legalities involved in international abduction matters, experienced guidance can help you determine whether filing a case with the Hague Convention is the best way to ensure Huey’s safe return to your care.