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Home / Can a mother who arrives in Israel for a visit with her husband and children successfully fight child abduction proceedings based on the claim that he ‘abandoned’ them and therefore consented to them remaining in the country ?

Can a mother who arrives in Israel for a visit with her husband and children successfully fight child abduction proceedings based on the claim that he ‘abandoned’ them and therefore consented to them remaining in the country ?

By: דיאנה שאלתיאלPublished on: 30 May, 2022

In a child abduction case between an Ultra-Orthodox couple the mother, who was an Israeli citizen married to an American citizen, claimed that her husband effectively agreed to her and the minors remaining in Israel when he put them in a taxi to her parents’ home in Bnei Brak immediately on arrival at the airport, retained their passports and did not purchase return tickets for them. However, the Tel Aviv Family Court rejected her claims, and ordered the minors home. It said that the mother’s evidence was inconsistent and lacked credibility, and that she had failed to prove any of the specific defences. It held that she had not adapted well to life in the United States, and had ulterior motives when she accompanied her husband and their the 3 year old son on a special trip to Israel to participate in a special Lag B’Omer haircutting ceremony, only 10 days after the birth of a their second child. She had decided in advance to either remain in Israel with the children – or to pressurize her husband, who grew up in Israel until the age of 14, to live there instead of the United States, or to make sure he rented accommodation away from his parents in New York.


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