Mother flees country with son in child custody battle

When parents go through a divorce, their primary concern is often for what will happen to their children. How will the children handle the divorce? Who will get primary custody? What type of child support agreement might be made? All of these questions are very important.

In a recent case, another issue came into play when a mother fled the United States, taking her 5-year-old son with her. While the woman was already divorced, and her son lived primarily with her, the judge in the case said that any travel outside of the United States with the child by either parent would need to be approved. Now, the woman is living in Japan with her child, and it may be up to Japanese authorities what happens with the child.

Japan recently ratified the Hague Convention which says that children must be returned to their native countries if they are the subject of an international child abduction. This can take place even if the child is with a parent. While it is important that parents obey orders from judges in child custody cases, these issues can be incredibly sensitive.

Speaking with a family law attorney might be a wise decision for anyone who has a child custody disagreement. They can help the person understand the legal process and take steps to try to have the custody agreement modified. At the same time they might have child support modified to reflect any new arrangement. It is important that each parent obeys the law or judges instructions during child custody disputes.

Source: Japan Daily Press, "Mother of 5-year old flees to Japan to assert child custody," Faith Aquino, Sept. 20, 2013

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