Jump to Navigation

Supreme Court to hear military family law custody case

Military families in Ohio face a number of legal challenges when it comes to issues of divorce and child custody. Military family law can become increasingly complicated when an American citizen marries a foreign national. This is especially true when child custody is at issue, and one parent wishes to relocate abroad with the child or children at the center of the debate.

One military father has fought a long and difficult child custody battle, which reached the Supreme Court on Dec. 5, 2012. At issue in the case is whether there is a right of appeal for custody in cases in which the child is no longer living within American borders. A decision is expected soon in the matter, and the outcome will have significant ramifications for the multitude of military spouses who face a similar set of circumstances.

The case began with a bitter divorce and resulting custody battle between an American servicemember and his wife, who is from Scotland. A judge originally ruled that the father had failed to prove that the child was a habitual resident of the United States, and allowed the mother to return to Scotland with the child. On appeal, the father's case was dismissed based on grounds that the United States courts do not have the proper authority to rule on an appeal that is made after a child has left the country.

The Supreme Court has now taken this military family law issue under consideration, and many military spouses will closely watch for an outcome. If the court determines that there is no proper U.S. jurisdiction in the case, some fear that other parents will remove their children from the country to avoid an undesirable custody decision. The outcome will have wide-ranging effects for military parents on both sides of the issue, in Ohio and elsewhere in the nation.

Source: savannahnow.com, "Fort Stewart soldier's fight for daughter reaches Supreme Court," Marcus E. Howard, Dec. 5, 2012

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
FindLaw Network

How Can We Help You Today? Tell Us About Your Case

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

Subscribe to This Blog's Feed Visit Our Family Law Website

Two Central Ohio Locations

Edward F. Whipps & Associates
500 South Front Street,
Suite 860
Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-398-4182
Toll free: 877-364-6544
Fax: 614-461-6010
Map and Directions

Dublin office
555 Metro Place North
Dublin, OH 43017
Phone: 614-461-6007
Toll free: 877-364-6544
Fax: 614-461-6010
Map and Directions

Ohio State Bar Association American Association for Justice Central Ohio Association for Justice The Supreme Court of the United States ABA State Board of Psychology Ohio | Past President Who's Who in America AV Peer Review Rated