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North Carolina judge to rule on international child custody case

Determining child custody in court is often a contentious issue, in which judges are forced to determine which course of action is in the best interests of the child. Under normal circumstances, this decision is difficult enough. Add international complications, in which those involved must determine the children's living situation in an unfamiliar country, and the trial can become very complicated indeed. But that is the situation faced by one North Carolina judge, who must now decide whether to allow three children to be adopted by a foster family, or to deport them their father's home country.

The children's father, a Mexican native, was sent back to that country in 2010 after he was arrested for traffic violations. His three children, ages 1, 3, and 5, were then placed in the custody of his wife. Recently, his wife lost custody of the children for unspecified reasons. The three children have been in foster care ever since.

Now, the father is demanding custody of the children, and asking that they be sent to live with him in Mexico. The children's current foster parent contested his claim, however, and asked the court to terminate the father's parental rights. That would allow the foster family to adopt the three children.

The foster parent has argued that the father is an unfit parent, stating that child protective services were called to father's house six times when he was living in America. She further contended that he had never provided financial support for his children. An attorney for the father noted that protective services never removed the children from the home, and stated that an injury made it difficult for the father to work.

The issues raised in cases like this one are often emotionally charged and difficult to rule upon. Usually, both sides are able to present good reasons for their appointment as sole guardian. For this reason, it is important that those involved in child custody disputes receive proper representation in court, to ensure that their interests are presented properly. Child custody cases have an enormous effect upon the lives of all those involved; therefore, it is imperative that they are handled with the utmost discretion and care.

Source: necn.com, "NC judge considers if deported man gets custody," Nov. 20, 2012