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International Family Law

The leading authority on international family law

25 MAY 2012

Urgent provisional measures under Brussels II revised v principles of comity

Maria Wright, Solicitor at Freemans


‘There is a widespread, half-articulated suspicion in the popular imagination - often encouraged by the popular media, which tend to fasten upon such cases of compelling human interest - that the courts of a foreign land are less just than one's own domestic courts, and more likely to favour unfairly their own nationals'.

Opinion of Advocate General Sharpston, Purrucker v Vallés Pérez, Case C-256/09, para 88

As citizens of the European Union, and accordingly beneficiaries of its ‘four freedoms' - the free movement of goods, capital, services and people - we are in the privileged position of being able to live in any of the 27 Member States that we may choose. We are able to move from one country to the next, without having to worry too much about the bureaucracy usually associated with an international move. As people move throughout Europe, families are increasingly formed by individuals who originate from different Member States. Children will move, lawfully or unlawfully, from one State to another. Parents will separate, if necessary divorce and families will fracture.

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