Nebraska Statute Seemingly Authorizes Seizure of International Child Custody Jurisdiction

Father lives in Canada. Mother now lives in Nebraska with daughter.

Canada still has jurisdiction over the child.

Mother alleges that Father has sexually and physically abused daughter, and seeks to block visitation ordered by Canadian courts. No criminal charges have been filed anywhere.

Nebraska courts agree with Mother and, exercising emergency jurisdiction, enter order to protect daughter.

The exercise of emergency jurisdiction under emergency conditions is not extraordinary. Typically, the court does what it must on a temporary basis to protect a child until the proper jurisdiction can proceed.

But Nebraska appears to have undertaken an extraordinary measure in this case.

According to reports, it seems that the legislature rushed through a special statute authorizing the Nebraska courts to seize continuing jurisdiction over the child.

If true, this would appear to violate both US child custody jurisdiction laws (UCCJEA and UCCJA Acts) and the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

Read more in this Omaha World-Herald article: Foreign custody bill zips through to signature.