Family Law Prof Blog

Editor: Margaret Ryznar
Indiana University
Robert H. McKinney School of Law

Saturday, December 31, 2005

Alaska Wins Right to Set Child Support In Dispute Over Tribal Sovereignty

The Alaska Supreme Court upheld a 2001 state Superior Court decision affirming the state's right to determine child support in a custody battle involving the Native village of Northway. The ruling is the latest decision in the ongoing tribal sovereignty issue over the jurisdiction of tribal courts. The state has long argued that the rights of tribes to govern their members was limited in scope. While the decision, gave some support to the state's view,  it did not completely resolve the issue. The Supreme Court had ruled in 1999 that the Native village of Northway, as a federally recognized tribe, had jurisdiction over child custody cases.  Source:  R.A. Dillon, Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, For the complete story, please click here (last visited December 31, 2005, reo).  The Slip Opinion in this case, John v. Baker, may be found here.

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