Family Law

International Divorce

What happens when the dissolution of a marital or familial relationship extends beyond the borders of any one country?

Countries impose vastly different regulations with regard to divorce, child custody, alimony or child support. Some systems may enforce unilateral decisions by one parent or make decisions without notice or the presence of a one or another parent. The procedure for determining legal issues surrounding divorce and child custody, although usually handle by the judiciary, they may also be administrative, religious or by elders in the community.

International divorces require understanding and consideration of the laws of more than one country: matters of residency, domicile, property ownership, tax, immigration, responsibility for payment of debt, and custody may all arise. We at Mercado & Rengel have the experience and knowledge to tackle these complex and life-altering issues.

Deciding Where to Divorce

Some systems are much quicker, cheaper and more effective than attempting to use the local jurisdiction and in many instances expats are prevented from applying for divorce in the country to which they have moved, so deciding where and when to divorce can be very important.

Because Family Law can differ from country to country, if there’s an international aspect to your relationship, it’s important that you seek the advice of an experienced international Lawyer who understands the implications of the different jurisdictions involved. This can be particularly important when children and financial assets are involved.

Only divorce lawyers with a track record of dealing with international cases will understand how to manage all the associated complications, and an experienced international family lawyer is best-placed to make sure you ‘re properly represented, your marriage is appropriately dissolved, and the whole process runs as smoothly as possible.

Mercado & Rengel International Divorce Attorneys

Greater mobility among individuals has led to an increasingly globalized world full of new complexities. As is the case in the U.S. when a divorce involves two or more different states, a jurisdictional problem arises internationally in almost every instance. Unlike cases of interstate movement in the U.S., in an international case there may not be a clear cut answer as to what law or international treaty must apply to every case or what court or country should determine the issues or what court should exercise jurisdictional authority over the child in question.

The Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction is an international treaty of reference for child custody. It provides a legal mechanism for a parent to request return or access to a child who has been moved abroad illegally or without consent or judicial authorization. The convention is supposed to provide an expeditious way to obtain the return of a child internationally abducted by one parent from one member country to another. The Convention was established to guarantee that parents simply did not run from one country to another to avoid court orders and to deny another parent his or her rights after a child has been abducted from the country of habitual place residence or wrongfully kept in a country that was not their country of habitual place residence

Mercado & Rengel has extensive experience in cases involving international law issues relating to child custody, both representing a parent in a proceedings in the U.S. and providing support and assistance to parents struggling to get visitation or custody in a foreign country.