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When Do You Need an International Family Law Attorney?


There may be situations where your family law needs extend not only beyond Florida, but beyond the borders of the United States as well. International law can be tricky, so it’s important that you retain a Boca Raton divorce attorney who has experience handling more complex cases. Wondering why you might need an international family law attorney? The following include a few potential scenarios.

International Divorce

International divorce is becoming a more common situation as one spouse may not be a United States citizen and has gone back to his or her home country. Or, maybe he or she is still in the country and you have concerns about whether or not they will be deported or if you’re liable for them for a number of years after you split up. Depending on the visa, like a K-1 visa, you could be responsible for supporting him or her after the divorce. This is why it’s important to speak with a Florida family law attorney if you’re looking to divorce someone from another country.

Perhaps one spouse is working abroad on assignment while the other spouse remains in Florida. Military deployments and temporary assignments abroad can also present some challenges for couples who want to proceed with a divorce in Florida. Child custody and financial support are two of the more complex factors in these types of situations.

International Child Custody

Even if you weren’t married, having a child with someone from another country could be more challenging. Be aware, this is a problem that U.S. couples can have as well. Your ex could choose to wrongfully remove a child from the United States, or refuse to come back, keeping your child in a foreign country without your permission. The parent who is left behind can look into their legal options and protections provided under the Hague Convention.

Not all international custody issues are nefarious either. Perhaps one of you has been offered a job or temporary assignment overseas. Custody jurisdiction laws state that parents cannot “venue shop” for a more favorable jurisdiction if they plan to move out of state or country.

International Marital Agreements

A common question is whether or not prenuptial or postnuptial agreements will be recognized in a different country. This is a complex question; one that needs to be answered by a Florida prenuptial agreement attorney once they’ve had a chance to review all the facts of the case. In many cases, you would need to coordinate with a lawyer in the particular country in question.

Parental Kidnapping

You don’t ever want to be a victim of parental kidnapping, but there have been cases involving one parent fleeing with the child without any permission. You need to contact an attorney right away because time is of the essence here.

Contact a Boca Raton Family Law Attorney

There may be other issues that require some international law experience, including international assets. Property distribution in a divorce can be complex on its own, but add in an international portfolio of assets, and it becomes even more challenging. If you need assistance, or have questions about international family law topics, contact the Law Offices of Schwartz | White today to schedule an initial consultation.


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