Our Managing Associate of the Family Law Division of Boyd Contreras, APC, Elyse Butler recently won a complex jurisdictional matter related to a child custody dispute and the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction And Enforcement Act (UCCJEA).
The UCCJEA vests "exclusive and continuing jurisdiction" for child custody litigation in the courts of the child's "home state"
Family Code section 2010 states that the court in the minor child's "home state" should make orders concerning the child. But, in this case, it was unclear whether California or another state where the child visited for extended periods of time was the child's home state. It could have been argued that both states met the definition of "home state."
Ms. Butler's ability to use the evidence code successfully as well as her knowledge and skills as a litigation associate for the family law division, enabled her to handle such a complex matter. Ms. Butler's ability to think fast and prepare properly enabled her to present strong evidence and examination of the witnesses involved such that the Family Law Judge was able to make a clear decision in favor of our client.
Under Family Code section 3427 there are eight factors in which the court must consider to determine whether the matter should be heard in California or a more convenient state. After arguing the eight factors, in our case, the court found that jurisdiction remained with California as our client desired. This eliminated the Opposing Party from getting "home turf" advantage and costly flights for appearances in another state.
In this case, and other custody disputes involving the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction And Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), it is necessity to have strong litigation attorneys who are qualified to examine witness on the stand and argue effectively in trial.