A California woman who had a child with a French man who has a family is using an international treaty in an attempt to acquire child support. The woman met the father of her son, now 6, while in France. The two began a romantic relationship. The man even sent her lavish gifts when the two were apart. She had no idea the man had a family when she became pregnant with his child.

The woman filed her case for child support in April 2013. She is asking for what is fair for her and her child. The case has been taken up by the California Department of Child Support Services. It is using the 2007 Hague Convention, which did not completely go into effect until Jan. 1, 2017. The treaty is known as the International Recovery of Child Support and Family Maintenance.

Even though the treaty went into effect in the United States just last year, there are still some 18,000 new international child support cases opened every year in the state of California. Many of these cases go beyond the scope of the Hague Convention and they involve some 68 countries.

Since the new agreement took effect in January 2017, California has initiated 20 international cases and has seen 18 cases requesting support from people living in California who have children in other countries.

Child support issues are very difficult. Add in the fact that some of them can involve international laws and they can be overwhelming. It’s best to know the local laws first in California before taking your case to a higher level.

Source: The Sacramento Bee, “Can California make a French dad pay for his kid? A test case is here,” Stephen Magagnini, April 24, 2018

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