When a child is taken over international borders, we have the skills to bring them back.
Bring your child home, with lawyers who understand what family means to you.
If you have had a child abducted by an ex-partner or family member then speak to our international child abduction lawyers. Let’s get to work bringing the situation under control and provide a resolution that places the child’s best intrests at its heart. We focus on listening to you and working with you to find the best strategy and solution to the issues you face. Our priority, along with the Court’s, is the welfare of the child.
We can advise on:
The Hague Convention & Child Abduction
Contact with a child across borders
Recognition & enforcement of foreign orders concerning children
Relocation law – moving children within the Country and across borders
International & domestic adoption
Call our international family team today
We know what to do if a child is moved from a country without permission
We advise on many international issues relevant to children and the international relocation of children. If you wish to move or travel abroad with your child or maybe you wish to prevent a child from being taken abroad then we can help. We also advise on international child abduction to include when a child is taken or retained abroad without consent or when a child is brought to this country without consent.
We have legal connections around the world
We work closely with firms in over 20 jurisdictions to ensure that their clients achieve the best outcome. We have excellent links with foreign members of the International Academy of Family Lawyers (IAFL) to ensure that you have access to the best advice. We are also a member of Interleges, which enables us to work with solicitors across the world on matters that may require international expertise.
We understand how different countries’ laws can affect your outcome
It is necessary to have extensive knowledge of international law when advising clients who have lived or married abroad or may have assets such as a property in another country. Careful thought and advice will be given in relation to which jurisdiction would be best to carry out your divorce proceedings or proceedings relating to children. It is essential to issue proceedings in the correct country to ensure that you can achieve the best possible financial settlement and to ensure that you can enforce any order made.
Represented the Respondents in the first reported decision to consider the matter of consent in a surrogacy arrangement pursuant to s54(6) of the Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 2008.
Represented Reunite in this landmark decision in which the Supreme Court ruled that a child who can objectively be understood to be an Applicant for asylum cannot be returned to the country from which they have sought refuge before their asylum claim has been decided.
Represented a parent in complex international adoption proceedings where a single-parent sought to have an Iranian Adoption Order recognised in the UK.
In this highly publicised case, represented a parent seeking to defend Hague Convention 1980 proceedings pursuant to Article 13(b).
This judgment addressed imperative issues about jurisdiction when issuing private law proceedings under the Children Act 1989 in any case that has an international element, particularly in cases where a parent has recently arrived in the jurisdiction with their children.
Successfully represented a parent in the Court of Appeal against an order under the Hague Convention for a parent to return two children to Canada.
An appeal raising the question as to whether and when it may be appropriate for the Court to dismiss a Hague Convention application. Kim was successful in defending a Hague Convention application.
Successfully represented a parent in the Court of Appeal in relation to the dismissal of a Hague Convention application to have two children returned to South Africa.
Represented a parent who had abducted a child to Russian where there were serious allegations of sexual abuse.
In another Hague Convention case, successfully represented a parent, in the Court of Appeal, whose child had been wrongfully removed from France. This case also involved care proceedings in which the child had been removed from the abducting parenting and placed with her uncle under an Interim Care Order.
Represented a parent who did not have parental responsibility and successfully argued that where a Polish parent had retained the child in Poland after a holiday in breach of promises to the English Court, those promises amounted to an express and unequivocal acceptance that the English Court had jurisdiction in matters of parental responsibility.
Represented a parent and successfully returned her child to Australia under the Hague Convention 1980.
International child abduction – what you need to know about the law and your rights
Child abduction is a complex area of law, especially when it concerns international borders.
If you believe that child has been removed from their home country then it is important to act quickly by seeking professional advice. In this guide we will explain some of the most common questions and concerns that we encounter when dealing with international child abduction.
‘Kim Lehal is outstandingly brilliant. She has an ability to settle anxious clients and explain complex legal matters in an understandable way.’
‘Kim Lehal is particularly recommended for her work in international child abduction proceedings.’
'Kim Lehal is committed to ensuring her clients’ interests are her priority and are considered by all. She is a great communicator who gives clear cut advice and gets involved in all key stages of cases‘.
Speak to Kim Lehal
Kim is a highly regarded specialist in matters related to international children and family law.
Frequently asked questions about international family law
A lot will depend on where your children have been taken. We can advise on international child abduction to include when a child is taken or retained abroad without consent or when a child is brought to this country without consent. It is vital that early advice is sought on these issues.
In order to remove your child from England & Wales on a permanent basis you will need the consent of every person who has parental responsibility for your child. We can advise you on how to obtain that consent both out of Court and by issuing proceedings.
Yes, provided certain criteria are met, and provided no divorce proceedings have already been started abroad. If you are concerned that your partner may start proceedings abroad and you would prefer for your divorce to be dealt with in England, it is very important that you contact us urgently. Issuing proceedings in the correct jurisdiction is essential in financial proceedings to achieve the best possible financial settlement, and practical matters such as attendance at hearings abroad and the language in which proceedings will be conducted must not be overlooked.
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