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Hi Expats,
I am a 31 year old mom to a baby boy now almost 3 years old. I am French, born in Paris but grew up in Provence and .... at 13 years old moved to San Diego with my mom and sister. We have lived in the States ever since. Now that I became a mom I have felt a strong need to be back in France to raise my son there.

We got to go back to France and spend a year there from June 2013 to June 2014. His father is American and lives in Las Vegas. I lived there as well and owed a house there until this year. I am torn between staying in Vegas where there is a lot to do for kids and the weather is great with his family near by... or going back to France and raising my son in France.

Right now the ball might still be in my court. He is suing me to get joint custody and is hoping the State of Nevada would keep me stuck in Vegas until my son is 18. Not fun. I want to work things out with him but he really doesn't want me to move back to France with his son.

Of course I am trying to compromise with visits, vacations...etc.

He has a job that keeps taking him out of town every few months or a job that might take him out of town permanently so there are a lot of unknowns and I so enjoyed France for a year. Even though I was by myself, I loved the support I got from the French Government (compared to practically none in the US).

Raising a child in the US is far more expensive, and exhausting I find... at least where I live in Vegas.

I would love some practical input. My heart feels so drawn to France... but my head tells me to stay put and enjoy the comfort I have here.

I do need recommendations of a good international law family lawyer and a shipping company if I do end up moving to France for good. I would like to ship back a few paintings from family, and a couple boxes of memorabilia, books...etc. Not sure if airplane is better or freight?

Thank you for your help!

Victoire.
 

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They would grow up to be better people if you raised them in France. This is my two cents, for whatever it's worth. I'm dual U.S./French Citizen, raised in L.A., I would have had a more wholesome childhood in France of that I'm quite sure (having travelled/lived back and forth there my entire life). I've seen many different cases where this is true. You won't be impoverished in France ever. You may get a little bored but you have your boys to keep you busy. Consultations with attorneys are usually free. I assume custody proceedings have already commenced somewhat, and there are serious repercussions for taking minors overseas. For example, you may never come back. What a hard situation. My heart goes out to you. My suggestion would be to find someone who appeals/has had success with negotiating with your ex before. As in, a friend of his or perhaps his mother. Good luck. I hope everything works out for you.
 

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Sorry to hear you're going through something like this, but it does seem to be one of the down sides to bi-cultural relationships (as I guess is the proper buzz word for these international marriages). Unfortunately here in the forum we've had several examples recently of problems that develop when the foreign partner has difficulty adjusting to the change in country and culture (and that's without children in the picture). And France isn't the easiest culture to adjust to for a foreigner.

I'm not sure whether it's an international lawyer you need, or just one well versed in family law in the US, specifically Nevada. At least you can start there, but it may not be possible to take the child out of the country without the father's express permission.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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I don't know, I think that if your ex is not abusive or neglectful, you have a responsibility to your son to allow him to be close to his father. It's not just about you or what you want anymore.

Why not wait a few years and see how things pan out with your son's father's job? If he has to relocate, then the onus is on him to figure out a way to easily see his son.
 

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Frankly, you will need your son's father's approval to take your son outside the US - there is an international agreement on this to which both the US and France are parties. I know that seems harsh, but since you are in any case not sure at the moment what you really want to do, your first step, as other have said, has to be to persuade your son's father to agree. As Bev suggested, you don't need an international lawyer for that, just a local lawyer with solid experience in such matters.

Good luck.
 

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EverHopeful said:
Frankly, you will need your son's father's approval to take your son outside the US - there is an international agreement on this to which both the US and France are parties. I know that seems harsh, but since you are in any case not sure at the moment what you really want to do, your first step, as other have said, has to be to persuade your son's father to agree. As Bev suggested, you don't need an international lawyer for that, just a local lawyer with solid experience in such matters. Good luck.
A friend of mine, French with a son born in the us from a us father had to expose her reasons to go to France to a judge before she was granted permission to take the little boy out if the country (it was california).
Now she is happy in France but for a few years felt she could not go back to the us to work as being in France, she felt protected under her own jurisdiction and did not have to fear an attempt of the father to claim custody.

I don't know what your situation is job wise, keep in mind that unemployment in France is high.

Also at the moment, you child is young. I don't know what you think of French schooling system. It is something I'd anticipate.

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