Friday, January 22, 2010

Removal Cases in Family Law

A recent Illinois appellate case reversed the lower court and permitted the removal of a child to a different state despite objections from her father, determining that the mother of the child met her burden of establishing the removal petition should be granted.  The removal will take the child from Illinois, where her father resides, to North Carolina, which will soon be the new home of her mother.  The dissent unsurprisingly suggests that de novo review is unwarranted and that instead the Court of Appeals should defer to the sufficiency of the evidence opposing removal.  Read the Illinois opinion here.

For me, these removal cases are perhaps the most unfortunate ones following a divorce because often a parent has legitimate reasons for moving to different parts of the world, even when at the risk of hurting the other parent’s relationship with the child.  This is particularly true in international marriages—and I suspect it will become a sticking point should Elin proceed with a divorce from Tiger. 

MR

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