Family Law Quarterly
Volume 49, No. 2 (Summer
Symposium on Jurisdictional Issues and Family Law
Please note that pursuant to the ABA's copyright and reprint policies, these articles may not be disseminated without written permission.
Integrating UIFSA (2008) with the Hague Convention of 23 November 2007 on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance
John J. Sampson & Barry J. Brooks
The prefatory note and comments to the uniform law present a brief history of the four versions of the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA), and include amendments approved by the National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws in July 2008. The focus is on the current version (2008), which amends UIFSA (1996) and (2001), the two versions of the act in most common effect in the United States. Additional footnotes and unofficial annotations are included to assist in further understanding of the present act and the pending international treaty for international enforcement of family support.
"Reconciling" FFCCSOA and UIFSA
Margaret Campbell Haynes & Susan Friedman Paikin
In 2014, Congress passed the Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act. The legislation included a requirement that all states enact the Uniform Interstate Family Support Act (UIFSA) 2008 as a condition of receiving federal Title IV-D child support funds. The 2014 federal legislation also amended the Full Faith and Credit of Child Support Orders Act (FFCCSOA). The Uniform Law Commission first developed UIFSA in 1992. Congress first enacted FFCCSOA in 1994. Although the intent was for the two acts to always include similar provisions, Congressional amendments to FFCCSOA have lagged behind amendments by the Uniform Law Commission to UIFSA. Although the 2014 amendments made certain provisions of FFCCSOA more closely follow the language of UIFSA, gaps remain. This article discusses the evolution of UIFSA and FFCCSOA. The authors identify additional needed amendments to FFCCSOA in order to avoid case law erroneously concluding there is a federal preemption of UIFSA.
Why a New Uniform Equitable Distribution Jurisdiction Act Is Needed to Reduce Forum Shopping in Divorce Litigation
J. Thomas Oldham
In the United States, when married parents with a minor child divorce, the most significant issues commonly pertain to (i) custody, (ii) support, and (iii) property division. Rules governing when a U.S. divorce court may assert jurisdiction over these issues in a family law case are not uniform. The lack of a sensible system of jurisdictional priority for support and property division can lead to forum shopping and a race to the courthouse. In addition, this lack of a uniform system can lead to different issues being heard in courts in different states, which can be expensive and inconvenient for the parties,
This article proposes a more coherent set of rules for priority of jurisdiction in U. S. family law matters. The author builds on the already accepted principle of “home state” as it is now applied for custody matters. He proposes that if parties are divorcing with a minor child, and the child has a home state, that home state court should presumptively hear all matters in the divorce. If parties do not have a minor child, a court in the state where the parties last had a common domicile for at least six months should presumptively adjudicate the economic aspects of the divorce.
Publication Date: September 2015