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Litigating an International Child Abduction Case Under the Hague Convention

(118 reviews)

Produced on December 10, 2018

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$ 59 Family & Matrimonial Law, International Law, and Public Interest Law In Stock
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Course Information

Time 62 minutes
Difficulty Intermediate

Course Description

This course, presented by Valentina Shaknes of McLaughlin & Stern, will examine the ins and outs of litigating an international child abduction case under the Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abductions. It will provide practitioners with an overview of the Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abductions and the relevant case law interpreting the Convention. Emphasis will be placed on pleading and proving the Article 13(b) defense, commonly known as the “grave risk of harm defense,” which allows courts to decline returning a child to his home country if doing so will expose the child to a "grave risk of physical or psychological harm."

Learning Objectives:

  1. Gain an overview of the Hague Convention on Civil Aspects of International Child Abductions
  2. Analyze relevant case law interpreting the Convention
  3. Examine how to plead and prove the Article 13(b) defense

Credit Information

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Valentina Shaknes

McLaughlin & Stern

Valentina Shaknes is a partner with McLaughlin & Stern. Ms. Shaknes concentrates her practice exclusively in the areas of matrimonial and family law, in which she has significant experience obtaining favorable results for her clients through negotiated settlements and, when necessary, litigation. Ms. Shaknes has represented many high-net-worth individuals in a variety of complicated matrimonial matters, including high-conflict equitable distribution cases, contested custody matters, child and spousal support, and the negotiation of complex pre- and post-nuptial agreements. Ms. Shaknes has successfully litigated complex matters in both Supreme and Family Courts in New York, Kings, Nassau and Westchester Counties, and has appeared before the appellate courts for the First and Second Judicial Departments.

Ms. Shaknes has successfully litigated international child custody and international child abduction disputes, including proceedings in federal court under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

Ms. Shaknes has been included in the New York Metro Super Lawyers Edition for the years 2014, 2015 and 2016 as a "Rising Star" in Family Law, a recognition bestowed on fewer than 5% of the attorneys in New York State, and was also named an "Outstanding Young Lawyer" by The New York Times in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Ms. Shaknes has completed the rigorous program with the National Institute for Trial Advocacy and American Bar Association's Family Law Trial Advocacy training.

Ms. Shaknes received her law degree cum laude from Brooklyn Law School, where she earned first place in the Domenick L. Gabrielli National Family Law Moot Court Competition, and was the Associate Managing Editor of the Journal for Law and Policy.


Gretchen K.

Very clear and understandable speaker. Helpful.

John N.

Outstanding presentation. I have recently become involved with a Hague Convention case, and the information in this course has given me a solid basis for understanding the issues.

Marian W.

This presentation was very interesting. It raised significant issues and provided both legal and practical information. Well worth the time.

Shelley T.

So glad I took this CLE. Considering branching out into a whole new market and getting federal certification for international child abduction custody cases.

Steven K.

Superb presentation. Her own experiences added greatly.

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