Articles Posted in U.S. 7th Circuit Court of Appeals

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Husband, a resident of Sweden, sought return of his child, under the Child Abduction Remedies Act, 42 U.S.C. 11601., which implements the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. Wife had taken the child to the United States, her home country, under the guise of a vacation. The Act provides for return of a child to the child's "habitual residence." The district court concluded that Sweden, where all three had lived until recently, was the habitual residence. The Seventh Circuit affirmed. The district court acted within its discretion in denying additional time for discovery and in awarding husband fees and costs. The court noted evidence that wife moved to Sweden, intending to make it her permanent home and the lack of evidence that husband presented a risk of harm to the child.

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The state agency took a 15-month-old away from his home and parents and into temporary protective custody, following an accident and a hospital visit. Protective custody involved a safety plan that limited the parents' access to the child; the parents claimed to have been threatened into accepting the plan. In the parents' suit under 42 U.S.C. 1983, the court determined that child welfare workers could have reasonably believed that taking temporary protective custody of the child was supported by probable cause and that the seizure did not violate a clearly established right. The Seventh Circuit affirmed with respect to the Fourth Amendment, substantive due process, and procedural due process claims premised on the initial removal, but vacated with respect to the Fourth Amendment and substantive due process claims premised on the continued withholding of the child as well as the substantive due process and procedural due process claims premised on the safety plan.