Jurisdiction Confusion In Child Custody Cases

divorce jurisdiction UCCJEAQuestion:

My ex-wife lives in another state and rarely has communication with our child, who primarily lives with me even though he lived with his mother in another state when the initial custody determination was made.

I would like to modify custody to reflect the changes in living arrangements, but I am unsure in which jurisdiction I should proceed?

Would a court in my state where my child primarily resides with me review custody if the original judgment was issued in another state where


I am unable to give you legal advice on divorce. I can give general divorce help for men, though, my knowledge is based on New York divorce laws where I am licensed to practice.

Without additional details of your case I cannot determine whether the case should be heard in the state you currently reside in or in the state where the mother lives and where the original child custody determination was made.

What I can say is that the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), which governs the ability of the court in a certain state to hear such matters, favors such cases being heard in the court in which the initial custody determination was rendered.

This is not to say that your current state’s courts do not have the ability to hear the matter.

Some factors (among others) that may come into play when determining where to file the petition are: where and with whom the child currently resides and has resided in the past; where the child’s parents currently reside; and whether the court in the mother’s state has determined that a court in your state would be a more appropriate or more convenient forum.

Remember, I am unable to provide you with anything more than divorce tips for men, so please consult with divorce lawyers for men in your jurisdiction.

To arrange an initial consultation to discuss divorce rights for men with a Cordell & Cordell attorney, including New York Divorce Lawyer Sarah J. Merry, contact Cordell & Cordell.

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