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How is a Child Custody Determination From Another Country Treated in Florida?

Previously in this space we discussed the fact that Florida and the other 49 states each passed the Uniform Child Custody and Jurisdiction Act to promote mutual respect for child custody determinations from one state to the next. But what if a family spent a great deal of time overseas before the parents got divorced and their child custody case was decided in a foreign court?

Part of the Act passed by Florida declares that a foreign country shall be treated like another state for the purposes of applying the law to a child custody determination. However, the law makes a specific exception for countries that are considered to violate "fundamental principles of human rights". It does not reference any specific list of countries for the purposes of interpreting this provision, though. Your best bet is to consult with an expert St. Petersburg child custody lawyer to determine whether or not a Florida court will uphold the decision of a foreign court.

Bottom Line: For the most part, a valid child custody determination from a foreign country will be enforced in Florida but there are exceptions to this rule like many others.

(copyright Stann Givens 2009)


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