State/Prov.  : United States

Case name    : Seaman v. Peterson

Case #          : No. 11–10243

Court             : United States Court of Appeals, Eleventh Circuit

Reviewed by : Laura W. Morgan

Main issue     : Child Custody

Mother, alleging that her four children were wrongfully removed from Mexico and taken to the United States by their father, petitioned for return of the children under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (Hague Convention) and the International Child Abduction Remedies Act (ICARA). Court of Appeals held: (1) evidence established beyond dispute that mother clearly exercised her rights of custody, as required to make out a prima facie case of wrongful removal; (2) no credible evidence, much less clear and convincing evidence, supported father’s allegation that if returned to Mexico their children would be put at grave risk of physical or psychological harm, or otherwise placed in an intolerable situation; and (3) clear evidence established that parents intended to abandon their previous habitual residence in the United States when they moved to Mexico.

Laura W. Morgan is the owner and operator at Family Law Consulting in Charlottesville, Virginia.Laura is available for consultation, brief writing and research on family law issues throughout the country. She can be reached through her website.