Senate approves child support convention.

Author:Crook, John R.
Position:Private International Law
 
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At the end of September 2010, the U.S. Senate gave advice and consent to ratification of the Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance, (1) subject to various reservations, understandings, and declarations. The United States signed the convention in November 2007; the ratification process in the executive and Senate took a little less than three years.

The United States was a major actor in negotiating the convention, (2) and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton issued a statement welcoming the Senate's action. (3) Action on the convention reportedly was complicated by some senators' concerns regarding a reference in the text to the Convention on the Rights of the Child. The text of the Senate's resolution of advice and consent follows:

Resolution: SEC. 1. SENATE ADVICE AND CONSENT SUBJECT TO TWO RESERVATIONS, ONE UNDERSTANDING, AND THREE DECLARATIONS.

The Senate advises and consents to the ratification of the Hague Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and Other Forms of Family Maintenance (the "Convention"), adopted at The Hague on November 23, 2007 (Treaty Doc. 110-21), subject to the reservations of section 2, the understanding of section 3, the declaration of section 4, and the declarations of section 5.

SEC. 2. RESERVATIONS.

The advice and consent of the Senate under section 1 is subject to the following reservations, which shall be included in the instrument of ratification:

(1) In accordance with Articles 20 and 62 of the Convention, the United States of America makes a reservation that it will not recognize or enforce maintenance obligation decisions rendered on the jurisdictional bases set forth in subparagraphs 1(c), 1(e), and 1(f) of Article 20 of the Convention.

(2) In accordance with Articles 44 and 62 of the Convention, the United States of America makes a reservation that it objects to the use of the French language in communications between the Central Authority of any other Contracting State and the Central Authority of the United States of America.

SEC. 3. UNDERSTANDING.

The advice and consent of the Senate under section 1 is subject to the following understanding, which shall be included in the instrument of ratification:

The United States is not a party to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and understands that a mention of the Convention in the preamble of this Treaty does...

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