Family Law Hub

B (A Child: Abduction: Article 13(b)) [2020] EWCA Civ 1057

The mother appealed against the judge's refusal to set aside a return order under the 1980 Hague Convention. The mother lived in England and had dual British/Bosnian nationality. The father was a Bosnian national and had always lived in Bosnia. She had returned with the child to England in circumstances which had involved a restraining order being made against the father by the Municipal Court in Sarajevo. The judge had found that the son was habitually resident in Bosnia immediately before his removal, that there had been no consent or acquiescence to his removal, and that the Article 13(b) threshold of grave risk of harm or intolerability had not been crossed. This appeal regarded the latter finding. Moylan LJ found that the Article 13(b) risk was clearly established. The judge had been wrong to discount the effect of the father's breaches of his previous undertakings, and the judge's approach to the mother's mental health had been flawed in a number of respects. It was clear that there would be a grave risk of the son being placed in an intolerable situation if they were to return to Bosnia and be separated. Peter Jackson LJ and Carr LJ agreed. The appeal was allowed and the father's Hague Convention application was dismissed.


Published: 11/08/2020

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