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Taking On The Complexity Of Cross-Border Divorces

The supportive and experienced attorneys at Mahaffey & Associates, Attorneys & Counselors at Law, offer legal services customized for our clients. Divorce is a life-changing time where important decisions must be made. We understand that it is difficult to be objective and level-headed when processing grief and stress, and we try to help our clients make good choices that are in their best interests.

Regardless of the complexity of their divorce actions, we handle all aspects of the dissolution while our clients pick up the pieces of their lives.

We Can Even Help With Cross-Border Divorces

Divorce is already a disruptive process for couples from the same country. Complex issues arise when a divorce action started with one person moving to Canada from Ohio or vice versa to get married.

Cross-border divorces transcend family law due to the significant impact on taxes. Division of assets based upon their location (Canada or the United States) is also a factor. Property transfers could result in unintended gift taxes dictated by residency and citizenship. Other potential issues that can arise in these cases include:

  • Determining which state or country has jurisdiction to hear the divorce or child custody dispute
  • Obtaining access to assets or accurate records of assets being held in a foreign country
  • Travel time and costs for the spouse who must leave their home to attend hearings in the area of jurisdiction

If you have concerns about a cross-border divorce, please contact our attorneys to discuss them and learn how we can help.

Protecting Children During A Cross-Border Divorce And Custody Dispute

Child custody is likely to be the hardest aspect of a cross-border divorce, particularly if both parents want to stay actively involved in their children’s lives. If one spouse surprises the other by filing for divorce, they may have also made arrangements to file in their preferred jurisdiction, which could have very different laws regarding child custody. Therefore, the parent responding to the divorce and custody filings may need to petition for a change of jurisdiction.

In certain cases (thankfully somewhat rare), when one parent has dual citizenship in another country, there is a risk that they may take the children out of the country. This can be very problematic if the other country refuses to cooperate with an extradition order. If you are worried your spouse is a “flight risk” and may try to leave with the kids, it is critical to speak to an attorney right away.

Most issues in a cross-border child custody case will not be as dramatic as the one described above, but children can nonetheless suffer significant stress and grief if they find themselves suddenly losing contact with one parent for long periods of time. Our attorneys will work tirelessly to help you protect your relationship with and access to your children.

Contact Mahaffey & Associates Today

For help with a cross-border divorce, take action and contact Mahaffey & Associates, Attorneys & Counselors at Law, online. To schedule a consultation at our Sylvania office, you can also reach us at 419-741-0111. Our lawyers make themselves available for evening and weekend appointments on request. Our firm also accepts major credit cards.