Cass Civ 1?re, 14 juin 2005, No de RG 04-16942

INCADAT legal file Hague parental abduction

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The child, a girl, was aged 2 _ at the date of the alleged wrongful retention. The parents were married and lived in the United States. In March 2003 the mother took the child to France for a vacation. On 31 March 2003 the mother informed the father that she did not intend to return. The Tribunal de Grande Instance de Draguignan dismissed the father’s return petition.
On 13 April 2004 the Cour d’appel d’Aix-en-Provence overturned the judgment of the trial court and ordered the return of the child. The mother filed an application to challenge the legality of this decision before the Cour de cassation. It was the mother’s case that Article 13(1)(b) was applicable because a new change in the child’s situation would expose her to a grave risk of harm.
She argued that the appellate court should have considered the removal of the child from her settled environment in France in the light of Article 8 of the ECHR, Article 3(1) UNCRC, general principles of public international law as well as constitutional principles. Moreover, the Court should not have ignored the grave risk inherent in the father’s plan to move to Santo Domingo.