International Child Support Enforcement Treaty Approved

Convention on the International Recovery of Child Support and other Forms of Family Maintenance, signed November 23, 2007
Representatives from sixty-eight countries have negotiated a new international treaty that will facilitate the collection of child support when a noncustodial parent lives in a different country than the custodial parent and child. The Convention is described in a news release from the United States Embassy to The Netherlands. For background, see the website for the Hague Conference on Private International Law.

So what does the Convention mean for the United States? The International Herald Tribune explains:

The new convention calls for states [countries] to exchange information and force parents to pay support with measures such as withholding wages, pension payments or tax refunds and making deductions from welfare payments. It says denying or revoking driving licenses could help.

In short, custodial parents who are United States residents will be able to use these remedies - already widely available within the United States - to collect child support from noncustodial parents living abroad.

To become effective in the United States, the Convention must be approved by a two-thirds vote of the United States Senate, per Article II, Section 2, clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution.

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