From Canada to Korea: A Father’s Legal Battle Case of Hague Child Abduction

In a recent case, our lawyer at Lee & Lee Law Firm worked together with a Canadian lawyer to file an international child return claim against our client’s former spouse (the child’s mother) who was wrongfully retaining their son and refusing to return him back to his habitual residence in Korea. The Canadian court acknowledged the father’s claim, and after more than 1 year, the child was safely returned to Korea.


From Canada to Korea A Father’s Legal Battle Case of Hague Child Abduction

1. From Canada to Korea: A Father’s Legal Battle in an International Parental Child Abduction Case

International parental kidnapping cases sometimes occur after an international divorce, where an ex-spouse decides to take a child abroad after the divorce and then refuses to let the other parent see the child again. If a child is abroad and cannot be reached, the parent who is left behind often has no adequate measures to do something about it.
Therefore, if you are in a similar situation, you should immediately take quick legal action with the help of an international child custody lawyer who can provide legal assistance in an international child abduction case.

The case in this article is that of a father, Mr. Kim (pseudonym), who filed a lawsuit for the return of his child at a Canadian court after his ex-spouse, without consulting him, did not return their child to Korea for a year.
With the help of our lawyers, Mr. Kim filed a claim for the return of the child at a Canadian court, and eventually received a judgement from the Alberta Court of Canada ordering the return of his son to Korea.

When Mr. Kim, the father, filed an application to the Canadian court for the return of his child under the International Child Abduction Act, R.S.A. 2000, C. I-4, the court’s order for the return of the child to Korea was as follows:


2. The Canadian Court’s Decision in the International Child Abduction Case under the Hague Convention

1. Ms. Lee (pseudonym), the former spouse and mother of the child that is staying with her in Canada, must return the child to her former spouse Mr. Kim who is residing in Korea.

2. The applicant, Mr. Kim, who is the father of the child, may bring his son from Canada back to Korea. Those permitted to pick up the child are the father himself, Mr. Kim, or his family member Kim**.

3. The father, Mr. Kim, will bear the travel costs for his child’s return to South Korea.

4. In accordance with this, the Canadian Government will issue a passport so the child can return to South Korea.

5. The mother, Ms. Lee, who is currently wrongfully retaining the child in Canada, must return him to his father by day x of month x, and the Canadian police with relevant jurisdiction will help the father, Mr. Kim, to ensure the safety of the child, who is in Canada.

6. The mother, Ms. Lee, who has unlawfully retained her son, may be arrested by the police if she violates the provisions of the order.

7. Under this order, Canadian law enforcement may take all necessary measures.

8. This order authorizes Ms. Lee to be committed to a correctional facility if she fails to appear before the judge of the Court of Queen’s Bench of Alberta.

9. This Canadian court does not make a ruling regarding Mr. Kim’s child support or visitation rights.



3. Conclusion (Case of Hague Child Abduction)

With the above ruling of the Canadian court, the father, who had not seen his child for over a year, was finally able to safely return his child to Korea.
But, although the father Mr. Kim was able to bring his child back from abroad with the ruling in the Canadian court case, the legal battle regarding child support and visitation rights was not concluded, so he continued to pursue a lawsuit in Korea for child support and child visitation against his ex-spouse.
Ultimately, the Korean family court ruled that Ms. Lee, the ex-spouse residing in Canada, must pay child support to Mr. Kim in Korea.

In cases such as this, a lawyer with extensive experience in international divorce cases needs to be able to smoothly and effectively communicate with foreign courts in order to coordinate the procedures with both the Korean as well as the foreign court to advance the trial. Successfully conducting the trial will be difficult for those with insufficient experience in international litigation. It is also important to first initiate the lawsuit in the country that has jurisdiction, whether that may be Korea, or the foreign country, depending on the circumstances.

Therefore, if you are facing an international family law case involving a divorce from a spouse with foreign nationality or a spouse who is living abroad, it may be necessary to seek the advice of an international family law expert lawyer to help you initiate legal proceedings as soon as possible. If your child has been wrongfully removed or retained by your foreign ex-spouse and you require a lawyer who is not only knowledgeable in Korean family laws, but also experienced with cross-border custody disputes, you can reach out to our international family expert lawyer at Lee & Lee to assist you with the proceedings for the cross-border child return as well as any related cross-border child custody issues.


From Canada to Korea A Father’s Legal Battle Case of Hague Child Abduction

Post category
Business hour

Mon-Fri 9:00AM – 18:00PM
(GMT+9 / Korea, Seoul time)

Worldwide Capabilities with Local Execution
Contact to
[email protected]