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The Supreme Court gives judgment in the child abduction case of In the matter of S (A Child)

The Supreme Court gives judgment in the child abduction case of In the matter of S (A Child)

The Supreme Court today gave judgment in the case of In the matter of S (A Child) in which reunite intervened.

The appeal considered the proper interpretation of Article 13(b) of the 1980 Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and whether the Court of Appeal had fallen into error in its own interpretation of the Supreme Court’s previous decision, in the case of In re E (Children) (Abduction: Custody Appeal) [2011] UKSC 27, [2012] 1 AC 144, given in June of last year, when Article 13(b) of the 1980 Hague Convention was analysed in detail.

reunite´s basis for intervening was to ensure that the Hague Convention is interpreted consistently and that it is applied fairly and effectively. In particular, we were concerned that any guidance as to its proper interpretation (provided by the appellate courts of England and Wales) should be clear to those who have to apply it, or who are subject to it, and there should be no confusion about the proper approach to a defence under article 13(b).

Following the judgment, Alison Shalaby, reunite´s Acting Director, said:

“We are grateful to the Supreme Court for being given the opportunity to contribute both oral and written legal submissions to this appeal, as an independent intervener. We welcome this judgment of the Supreme Court as reaffirming the clear principles stated in the helpful and important previous decision of the Court in In re E (Children) (Abduction: Custody Appeal). reunite continues to believe that the 1980 Hague Convention is a remarkably effective international instrument regulating the international movement of children and, where appropriate, preventing or remedying child abduction.

We extend our thanks to Henry Setright QC (of 4 Paper Buildings), Edward Devereux (of Harcourt Chambers) and Messrs. Dawson Cornwell for representing reunite on a pro bono basis."