Judgment concerning France

Carpet of the main hearing room of the Human Rights building

In the case of Verhoeven v. France the Court held that there had been no violation of the right to respect for family life.

The case concerned the decision of the French courts to order the return of the applicant’s son to Japan under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. The applicant, a French national, had married a Japanese national in France and subsequently moved to Japan with him, where the couple had had a child. The applicant had returned to France with the child and filed a petition for divorce.

The Court found that the domestic courts had not ordered the child’s return automatically or mechanically but had duly taken into account the applicant’s claims in fair and adversarial proceedings. It further noted that the courts had given reasoned decisions that had sought to serve the child’s best interests and had ruled out any grave risk.

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