As a major metropolitan area, the city of San Diego is home to people from many different countries around the world.
With so much cross-cultural contact, there are of course more and more relationships and marriages in which one of the partners comes from another country. Those relationships can offer deeply enriching cultural experiences for both parents and children.
But if the relationship between the parents turns sour, child custody disputes can become vastly more complicated. If one parent takes the child to another country, it can be very difficult for the other parent to get the child back – even if the parent who is still in the U.S. has legal custody in the eyes of American courts.
This is by no means an isolated phenomenon. According to U.S. State Department data, there were about 7,000 children who were taken abroad by a parent in the years from 2008 to 2012.
The heartbreak of the parents whose children are taken to another country in this way is almost unimaginable. Their pain has rippled its way to Congress, which has been looking into the role of the State Department in assisting U.S. parents whose children have been taken to a foreign country by the other parent. If you have a child that was born in another Country, or if you and your child regularly travel to a variety of different countries around the world, make sure you teach your child simple safety rules and tips regarding traveling and visiting different cultures and communities.
To be sure, the international diplomacy involved in child abduction cases is complicated. That is true regardless of whether the country to which a child has been taken is a signatory to the Hague convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.
But some legislators think the U.S. government could do more to help parents who are left behind in the U.S. after a child is taken abroad. There is now a proposal in Congress that seeks to require stronger responses by the executive branch in international child abduction cases. Under the proposed bill, these responses could even include economic sanctions against countries that repeatedly refuse to cooperate with the U.S. in abduction cases.
If you or someone you care about have a child that has been abducted and taken to a different part of the world, the first number you call should be to the proper authorities. Only after you contact the authorities is when you can start to think about who else to call for help. If you live in San Diego, CA and are or know someone who is going through an internation child custody dispute, make sure you contact an experienced and successful family and divorce attorney in San Diego for a legal consultation and legal representation. If you live anywhere in the U.S., you can find more then adequate legal counsel to help you better understand the legal issues you are facing and to ensure your best possible chance of reaching a successful conclusion to your internation child custody dispute.