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Jurisdictional Issues With a Child Custody Case in San Diego

Child custody disputes can become very difficult for all parties involved. The argument over who gets custody becomes even more complex when it involves multiple jurisdictions. When parents separate, perhaps they want to move to another state or already have moved and wish to file for their divorce in that state.

The problem with this is determining which state has jurisdiction or the legal right to oversee the case. This will complicate matters more when both states are claiming jurisdiction over the child custody case. In order to resolve this issue, the law today gives jurisdiction to the home state of the child. Before delving deeper into the present day laws, it is important to understand the origins of the laws surrounding these jurisdictional issues.

When it comes to fighting for custody of your child as you attempt to prove home state jurisdiction to resolve your case, you’ll need the experience and guidance of a San Diego family law attorney from Mattis Law, A.P.C.. We can help walk you through what you will need to do and what you should know when entering into a jurisdictional dispute surrounding your child’s custody arrangements.

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Client Testimonial

"I was in another country, facing a high conflict divorce, jurisdictional issues over child custody...I have felt reassured that I was receiving expert representation by individuals that care deeply about their clients and especially the children involved."

- Natasha from Google

History of Jurisdiction Laws With Child Custody

In the past, there were many instances where parents were fighting for custody and would kidnap their children across state lines and attempt to find a different court to hear their case. In order to prevent these unlawful attempts from happening, the Uniform Law Commissions enacted the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act (UCCJA) in 1968, and to reinforce this more, the Parental Kidnapping Prevention Act (PKPA) in 1981.

However, there were issues found with the implementation of both of these, mainly in not providing the home state of the child first priority and there was no section regarding interstate enforcement of child custody orders. In order to answer the confusions of these two acts, the Uniform Law Commissions created the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) in 1997 to replace the UCCJA. The main thing this law did was to provide exclusive jurisdiction over child custody cases to the home state of the child.

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What Is Home State for a Child Custody Dispute?

When looking to make a determination around which state has the legal jurisdiction to decide the results of a child custody dispute, courts will need to figure out which state is the home state for the child. Home state is decided by seeing where the child has lived with either one parent or both for a period of six consecutive months directly preceding the commencement of the divorce proceedings. If the child is under six months old, courts will determine the home state to be the state in which the child has lived since birth. Once the court decides on the home state, that state will oversee the child custody dispute and have complete jurisdiction over the case.

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How Can a San Diego Family Law Attorney at Mattis Law, A.P.C. Help Me?

Making the determination of the home state of your child in a child custody case can be complicated and it is understandable if you are feeling overwhelmed with this dispute along with the other issues pertaining to your divorce proceedings. If you have moved or live in a different state from your former spouse and you are trying to gain custody of your child, you’ll need the help of an experienced San Diego family law lawyer from Mattis Law, A.P.C. Contact our office today and learn more about what we can do going forward with resolving issues involving your child custody case and jurisdictional disputes. We can be reached at (858) 328-4400.

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Additional Information

(858) 328-4400