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International child custody disputes may get complicated

The love of parents can be immeasurable when it comes to their children. During divorce, child custody is one of the most important issues, as each parent wants the loved child to be with them. Laws in Minnesota provide that the child's best interests be kept in mind while deciding on child custody issues.

However, international child custody issues can get complicated, especially when one of the parents leaves the country with the child. A similar issue arose when a mother fled to Mexico with her children. The father had primary custody of his daughter, and the mother had visitation rights. She also had a daughter from a previous marriage with her.

The father left the children at his ex-wife's home for the weekend and expected their return a couple days later. When the children did not return, the father tried to reach his ex-wife. After unsuccessful attempts, he went to the house, but no one was there. He contacted the police who arrested the woman at the Mexican border. The man now plans to file for sole custody.

When a couple is involved in a child custody dispute, sometimes it may become an issue of ego, control and power. But this may distract the attention of the parents from the main issue, which is parenting time. The parents may get involved in unwanted disputes and may lose the custody of their children.

While each parent wants their child to live with them, they should know that legal custody and physical custody are taken seriously in Minnesota. Physical custody is the most contested in custody disputes. While deciding on these matters, the court will consider the best interests of the child. The court may appoint an evaluator to interview the parents, children and witnesses before it makes a decision on this issue.

Source: Liberty Tribune, "Father seeks custody of child after mother heads for the border," Angie Anaya Borgedalen, Jan. 24, 2013

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