Hague Convention Treaty on Recovery of International Child Support and H.R. 1896 [July 15, 2013]   [open pdf - 299KB]

"It is often difficult, if not impossible, to enforce child support obligations in cases where the custodial parent and child live in one country and the noncustodial parent lives in another. The United States has not ratified a multilateral child support enforcement treaty dealing with this issue. P.L. 104-193 (enacted in 1996) established procedures for international enforcement of child support. Currently, the federal Office of Child Support Enforcement (OCSE, within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)) has reciprocal agreements regarding child support enforcement with 15 countries, including Australia, Canada (separate agreements with 9 of the 10 Canadian provinces and with all 3 Canadian territories), Czech Republic, El Salvador, Finland, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovak Republic, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. The Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance (referred to hereinafter as the Convention or Treaty) was adopted at the Hague Conference on Private International Law on November 23, 2007. The Convention contains procedures for processing international child support cases that are intended to be uniform, simple, efficient, accessible, and cost-free to U.S. citizens seeking child support in other countries. For many international cases, U.S. courts and state Child Support Enforcement (CSE) agencies already recognize and enforce child support obligations, whether or not the United States has a reciprocal agreement with the other country. However, many foreign countries will not enforce U.S. child support orders in the absence of a treaty obligation. The United States was the first country to sign the Convention. The other signatories are Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, the European Union, Norway, and Ukraine. However, the United States has not yet ratified the treaty."

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CRS Report for Congress, R43109
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