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RESOURCES - SINGLE AND DIVORCING PARENTS

« Separate Property | State Bar Takes a Position on Pending Legislation | Main | Division of Military Pensions in Divorce Judgments »

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I'd have to agree with Carlos, it does seem that quite often fathers abduct more often because they've exhausted all legal recourse and can't find a legal way to be with their child. Of course there are exceptions to this rule, but what do we do about it?

At the public comment session held in DC by the US DoS in April to discuss a possible protocol to the Abduction Convention there were some who thought the Hague Convention needed to be rewritten in light of the fact that mothers are the majority of the abductors and that they almost universally claim to be fleeing domestic violence (as if a woman willing to abduct a child would have qualms about making false DV allegations.)

It's unfortunate that any time any such discussion occurs the issue of DV tends to uselessly consume all the available time without any significant progress or consensus being achieved but that's beside the point I wanted to make.

Adair Dyer, whom I consider to be amongst the foremost experts on the topic, said that, while he couldn't present statistics or studies to prove it, he believed that the reason that mothers are the TP in the vast majority of cases was precisely because the Abduction Convention actually served as a deterrent to would be abducting fathers, whereas the Convention's ineffectiveness against abducting mothers prevented it from being a deterrent to them.

I firmly believe that hidden behind the gender neutral numbers produced by the OCI in these cases is a bleak picture where the majority of the abductors are mothers and the majority of returned children were abducted by a father. Similar results probably exist if any gender specific study were to be done of IPKCA prosecutions.

I'm not inclined to rationalize the motives of any taking parent, but it does seem that mothers abduct more often because they don't want to share custody whereas fathers do so because they have effectively lost all custody rights or found that the courts don't care to enforce them.

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