In the case of Re B (A Child) (Habitual Residence:
Inherent Jurisdiction)  UKSC 4 the
Supreme Court (by a majority of 3:2) have delivered a judgment of
huge practical significance which stops children being left in a
legal limbo when they are removed from one jurisdiction and taken
to another by one of their parents.
In short, the Supreme Court has allowed an appeal by a
non-biological mother of a child, holding that the unilateral
removal by the child's biological mother (in February 2014) to
Pakistan did not result in the child losing her English habitual
residence, and the English court therefore retained jurisdiction to
make decisions about her welfare.
Rather than focusing on the intentions of the abducting parent,
this landmark decision now means that the child is unlikely to lose
their pre-existing habitual residence at the same time as the
The issues involved are particularly salient in the modern world
where increasing numbers of families are becoming internationally
mobile. The decision will be of great interest to families and
family lawyers globally as it highlights that the focus in
international custody cases should be on the child and not the
parent. It also highlights the ability and willingness of a state
to make orders affecting its citizens regardless of where they may
In the wake of the Supreme Court's clarification of these
issues, it is anticipated that parents may now be more likely to
engage in negotiation and mediation to resolve child disputes of an
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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My friend was married to a Muslim man and they had a daughter together before he divorced her. He recently passed away, leaving another daughter from his first wife, whom he divorced before marrying my friend.
My husband divorced me and now three months have passed, meaning the divorce has become irrevocable. However, we have reconciled and he now wants to marry me again and I have no problem with that.
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