This blog highlights recent changes in the law and recent court decisions that impact families in Michigan, while also providing basic information about family law topics including divorce, child custody, child support, spousal support, property division, and adoption in Michigan, specifically the Grand Rapids area.
Yesterday, on March 5, 2014, the United States Supreme Court issued an opinion In Lozano v. Montoya Alvarez, Docket Number 12-820. A copy of the opinion can be found here. The parties in this case had a daughter together and lived together in the United Kingdom until November 2008, when the mom and child went to a women's shelter. In July 2009, the mother (Alvarez) and the child moved to New York. Lozano didn't find them until November 2010, and then he filed a Petition for Return of Child (to the UK) pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. The Hague Convention provides that if such a petition is filed within one hear of the move, the court has to order the return of the child. If it's been more than a year, the court is supposed to order the return of the child unless the child is "settled in its new environment." Here, the court found that it had been more than a year and the child was settled. Basically, end of story.