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Clare, Family Solicitor
Category: Family Law
Satisfied Customers: 34889
Experience:  I have been a solicitor in High Street Practise since 1985 and have specialised in Family Law for the last 10 years
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I raised both my children in the USA and returned to

Customer Question

Hi, I raised both my children in the USA and returned to England 2006 my children both now adults. My son entered into relationship in 2008 which lasted just a few months where a child was born out of it. My sons ex decided to move to South Wales UK taking my grandaughter. At that point my son gave up as ex made contact very difficult returning to the states of where he is a citizen. During this time we discovered my grandaughter was being physically and emotionally abused. My son had to return again to the UK of where he fought for custody and won December 2013. A court order was put in place allowing mother contact through the year, summer holidays Christmas etc, phone calls every week and skype for mother. 17 months later with court order being broken so many times by mother failing to have her daughter at alloted times, and when she does have contact with her example 3 weeks in summer she is contacting family to collect daughter after only 1 week as daughter does not want to be with her. Summer school term time of where she should see her daughter for 1 long weekend mother does not attempt to see her child. Telephone calls and skype are none existent as mother fails to call her daughter ever. In all she sees her daughter in total approximately 6 weeks out of a full 12 months period. My son now wishes to return to the USA of where his home has been most of his life, to a job awaiting him offering his child a better quality of life. His sister is already back there with her 2 children, grandparents live there and I myself paternal grandmother am returning when my house has sold. Under the Hague Convention act would my son get into trouble by taking his daughter to the States. Would he be forced to return her to the UK. He has never stopped contact with mother and child ever and would allow his daughter the 6 weeks which is broken up over the full year to continue by sending his child to spend the entire 6 weeks of summer with her mother every year. He has approached his child's mother who due to her utter hatred for my son and the fact he has custody has refused point blank to give her consent. How long would it take to go through the courts with an application to move the child abroad and again what kind of trouble could my son get in to if he couldn't wait for the courts hence the job awaiting him he might lose removing his child without consent. He doesn't want there to be any serious problems, thankyou for any replies.....

Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Family Law
Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your question.
My name is ***** ***** I will do my best to help you
Your son needs either the consent of the mother or an Order from the Court to remove the child from the UK.
If he fails to obtain this and simply moves then his ex can apply for the return of the child to the Uk - and this can be forced- until the Court has decided whether or not the move is in the best interests of the child
Your son has an excellent chance of succeeding in an applictaion and shoudl issue it sooner rather than later - it could take between three and six months to complete
I hope that this is of assistance - please ask if you need further details
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank-you so much for your response. I do have a further question if this is ok. That is should my son return to the USA alone initially to his place of employment whilst the courts are preparing his case, returning to the UK when he gets his date for the hearing would that possibly strengthen his case in the courts allowing him to then take his daughter back to the States, showing the courts that he is actually working and has a home set up for his daughter. Currently he resides with his daughter at my home, I represented myself alongside him providing my own evidence of my granddaughters neglect when he fought for custody which helped in him securing custody of her. I would continue to care for my granddaughter in my sons absence. Before he got custody of his child his ex partner tried playing the card that he had abandoned his child when he returned to the States to work although the courts did not accept this argument from her but I believe she would try to use the same tactic should he return abroad to work leaving her in my care. He really is just trying to do everything in the correct manner and does not want to leave anything to chance of doing anything wrong for his application to be rejected. Thankyou again for your assistance in helping me in this situation. Regards ***** *****

Expert:  Clare replied 2 years ago.
My apologies for the delay
That would not be wise - other than short visits to ensure that he keeps the job open.