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Jeff Kapteyn

Does anyone have any information concerning HB 4925? Although it is possible to file a motion setting forth the risk factors and personality profiles, the lack of knowledge concerning this issue and the lack of controlling legal precedent on this issue in Michigan creates a great deal of uncertainty.

There doesn't appear to be any significant opposition to this bill, so it's not clear why it died in committee. This seems like common sense legislation that addresses real problems.

Jeanne M Hannah

Hello Jeff,

We need to get moving on this legislation. Given the economic times, it is surely needed. I have filed a motion asking for the kinds of protection the Uniform Act would provide, and I found the circuit court judge generally receptive. Just use the guidelines delineated above. Also, contact your legislator.



I live in Michigan and my wife is from Cuba, we have a 2 year old daughter together. She is talking about getting a divorce and has in the past said she was going back to Cuba to live with her daughter. Now, if she gets legal custody does that mean that she can travel home to visit and I cannot do anything to stop her? My fear is that she would go there and stay and I would not be able to recover my daughter.

Jeanne M Hannah

Hello John,

I recently communicated with one of my legislators. Although the Uniform Child Abduction Prevention Act that was earlier before Michigan's legislature has died in committee, that doesn't mean that you cannot request the Court to enter an order incorporating those protections that this law would have required.

In your case, since Cuba is not a signatory to the Hague Convention, you and your child face a high risk of parental kidnapping. The U.S. State Department would not be able to assist if your child were taken to Cuba and retained. As a preliminary matter, you should promptly enroll your child in the Passport Alert Program.

Judges have a great deal of autonomy when it comes to conditions that may be imposed upon the exercise of parenting time. Therefore, because of the high risk of parental kidnapping in your case, I recommend that you seek such an order. Contact me for more information if necessary.

Nicholas James


This law should not pass. See the New Jersey Law Commissions final report dated Dec 2009 for some good reasons.

You refer to 'international abductions' in your article. While that was the committees original scope, they expanded the scope to include 'all' abductions (Aug 04 if I remember) = including interstate and instate.

Instate abductions are currently handled directly by state law and family courts.

Interstate abductions are currently covered by the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act.

The expansion of the bill from the international scope to the all encompassing scope was poorly done.

The provision in the bill to allow a parent (custodial or noncustodial) to request a dynamic entry of the other parents house to take the kids through an ex-parte court order is a power no persons ex should be empowered with. This provision will prove harmful to the children in the extreme.

The alleged 'list' of abduction factors, given the prelevance of divorce in this state, will turn this country into a police state in no time. Especially as only ONE factor from the list has to be met.

Ordinary parenting acts such as 1) picking up medical records; 2) picking up school records; and 3) picking up birth certificates have no place on this list. These are acts that all good parents must do.

Ordinary living acts such as 1) quitting a job (or being fired); 2) selling a house; 3) terminating a lease; 4) closing a bank account; 5) or other unusual financial activity are all acts that ordinary people engage in every day. They do not indicate a flight risk. They have no place on a list as primary act.

The breath of the 'travel plan' limitations are inappropriate. A person falls afoul of this law if they make any travel plans out of state. It does not matter if the plans are for themselves, their children, or any other family member. Is booking tickets to the Super Bowl or Disney land now an act that can allow the courts to consider the person a 'potential felon'?

And what about the ordinary family/life events listed? What does a parent have to do to not meet these requirements?

How many family members does a person need living in the state to have 'strong family connections to the state? One, Three, Fifty?

How many family members living in another state does a person have to have to meet the 'strong family connections to another state? One, Three, Fifty?

Just what exactly is it a person has to do to have 'strong emotional connections to another state'?

or for the converse part of the law, to 'lack strong emotional connections to their current state'?

Similary, the law allows a person to be accused because they have:

- strong cultural ties to another state.
- strong financial ties to another state.
- lack of strong cultural ties to their current state.
- lack of strong financial ties to their current state.

Just who's and what culture are we talking about?

Just how much money (or lack thereof) are we talking about?

Please reconsider your support of this unconstitutional, draconian legislation

Jeanne M Hannah


The UCCJEA already provides for a ex parte warrant to be issued that allows law enforcement to have access to private property to recover taken children. If exigent circumstances exist, law enforcement can even go in at night. I've seen it work countless times to recover children whose taking parent had earlier lied to law enforcement, saying that the children were not there.

I've not read anything anywhere about fears that this law is overbroad if applied to domestic cases. Can you send me some references to articles criticizing it?

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