Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Child's Immigration Status Does Not = "Wrongful Retention" in the U.S.; 9th Circuit Speaks

The 9th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals has reversed a Federal trial court and denied an petition under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction for return of the child to Mexico, pending an actual custody determination. Said the progressive (or, depending on who you talk to, "notoriously liberal") Court, in an opinion by Justice Reinhardt:

[W]e must decide here whether a child of Mexican origin, whose mother wrongfully retained her in the United States, should . . . . . . be returned to Mexico while the proceedings are conducted there. To decide this issue, we must consider . . . . . . whether a court may find that a child is not “settled” for the purposes of Article 12 of the Hague Convention for the reason that she does not have lawful immigration status.

To both of which questions, the answer is apparently, "No".

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