Re J. (A child) (Return to foreign jurisdiction: convention rights), [2005] UKHL 40, [2006] 1 AC 80

INCADAT legal file Hague parental abduction

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The proceedings related to a young boy born in April 2000. His father was Saudi Arabian and his mother had joint British and Saudi Arabian nationality. The family home was in Saudi Arabia. The parents separated and divorced in 2001 but resumed cohabitation that same year and remarried in early 2002.
In July 2002 the mother took the child to England with the father’s consent. She then enrolled on a one year Masters degree in London. The father subsequently agreed to this and to letting the child stay. In May 2003 the mother issued divorce proceedings in England. The father applied for an order that the child be returned to Saudi Arabia. On 31 October 2003 the Family Division of the High Court refused the father’s application. The father appealed.
On 2 April 2004 the Court of Appeal (England and Wales) allowed the appeal and ordered the return of the child after having considered the child’s best interests, the objections of the mother and the policy to be applied in non-Convention abduction cases. The mother was granted leave to appeal to the House of Lords.