iCare Report: Carrying out International Child Abduction cases and using International Family Mediation as a method of resolving conflicts

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Research conducted as part of the iCare project outlines a lack of a harmonised register of lawyers specialising in International Child Abductions (ICA) cases and coordination between the authorities, e.g., in defining who is responsible for hearing of the children or carrying out a return decision. Furthermore, the report indicates that parents often do not know that mediation is an option for resolving family disputes. In addition to raising awareness of family mediation and more training for mediators, the iCare consortium stresses the importance of enhancing the competencies of professionals such as judges, lawyers, and mediators who work in the field.

The report compares characteristics of the means in the participating states in the iCare project (Bulgaria, Italy, Greece, Germany, Belgium), and in the additional countries such as The Netherlands and Poland, on carrying out parental child abduction cases and the usage of International Family Mediation as an alternative method for resolving those conflicts. Moreover, it compares certain aspects of the 1980 Hague Convention and the Brussels IIa Regulation. Lastly, the upcoming Council Regulation (EU) 2019/1111 of 25 June 2019 on the jurisdiction, the recognition and enforcement of decisions in matrimonial matters and the matters of parental responsibility (Brussels IIa Recast) are shortly reviewed in favour of reflecting if the upcoming legislative measures will be in harmony with the evaluated goals.   

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