Any child custody situation can be difficult, but cases involving questionable jurisdiction between states or countries can be especially challenging as the story involving actress Kelly Rutherford and her two children shows. Ohio residents may recall that the actress had a joint custody arrangement with her former husband Daniel Giersch that became complicated when his visa was revoked in 2012.
A California judge ruled at the time that the children should be sent to live with their father in Monaco so that they could reside in one location. After trying to bring the children back to the U.S. since the first ruling, a Los Angeles judge recently told Rutherford that California no longer has jurisdiction in the case. The judge's reasoning was that the children do not have a strong connection to the state since they have spent little time there in more than two years.
Rutherford's attorney argued that the actress has family and business ties to the state but was not able to sway the judge. He also said the court previously ordered the situation that caused the children to lose their ties to California and that this order is now being held against Rutherford. A legal analyst noted that the actress is in a difficult position and that there has never been a case like this one where the children were sent to live in another country because one parent could not enter the U.S.
Not all situations are like this one when going through a divorce, but custody disputes can still be troubling. This is especially true when one parent wants to move farther away or to a different state after a divorce. An attorney for a divorcing parent might assist in attempting to negotiate a parental rights agreement that is acceptable to the court.