Attorney Claudia Zucker Examines Multi-Jurisdictional Custody Cases

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Claudia Zucker, a family law attorney, in light of her recent multi-jurisdictional custody case, offers tips on proper jurisdiction in close border areas.

Multi-jurisdictional custody cases can be quite challenging, especially while representing clients in close border areas. It creates complications, while litigating complex divorce cases that involve custody and support issues.

Claudia Zucker of Law Offices of Claudia Zucker discusses the ins and outs of multi-jurisdictional custody cases, noting one of her ongoing cases. “Multi-jurisdictional custody cases can be quite challenging, especially while representing clients in close border areas,” said attorney Claudia Zucker, who represents clients in the Virginia, Maryland and Washington, D.C. areas. “It creates complications, while litigating complex divorce cases that involve custody and support issues.”

As for Zucker, she represents a client whose wife filed a divorce in the Fairfax Circuit Court (Case No. 2015-07083). The divorce pleading, initiated by the wife in Virginia, asked the court to incorporate the parties’ Comprehensive Settlement Agreement into a court order (the agreement included a resolution of custody, visitation, support and division of assets). The agreement, according to court documents, also provided that the father could initiate a modification of visitation issues within one year of the agreement, which he did.

According to court documents, the wife later filed to nonsuit the case (dismiss based upon a statutory right in Virginia) and then filed a new divorce in Washington, D.C. in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia (2015 DBR 004295), as she relocated to D.C. during the first divorce process in Virginia. The husband also filed a new divorce in the Circuit Court of Fairfax, VA (Case No. 2015-16290).

Court documents state that the District of Columbia Superior Court later held a status hearing on January 21, 2016, as the husband had filed a motion to dismiss the D.C. divorce case. The D.C. judge dismissed the D.C. divorce case as having been filed in the wrong jurisdiction, as the divorce case was pending in Virginia.

Multi-jurisdictional cases like these, adds Zucker, are common, and the key is to work with an experienced attorney in this area. “There are plenty of divorce attorneys, but not all have experience dealing with different jurisdictions,” said Zucker. “It is important to talk to an attorney about what is the proper jurisdiction of your case. Sometimes you may even have to hire an attorney in two different jurisdictions, as one jurisdiction might be appropriate for the custody issues while a different jurisdiction may be appropriate for the divorce issues. Even the proper jurisdiction for the divorce itself might be contested.”

Clients battling over the proper jurisdiction of a case creates opportunities both for creative lawyering as well as leverage in negotiating and settling one’s issues. It is important to hire experienced counsel when dealing with these complex issues.

About Claudia Zucker, Law Offices of Claudia Zucker
If one is going through a challenging family law matter such as divorce, separation, or a child custody dispute, family law attorney Claudia Zucker is here to help. Attorney Zucker represents people in Northern Virginia, including those in Arlington, Fairfax, McLean, Alexandria, Falls Church, Vienna, Manassas, and residents in all cities within Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Arlington County, and Prince William County. For more information, please call (703)-522-5629, or send Claudia an email at claudia(at)zuckerlawfirm(dot)com. Her office is located at 1840 Wilson Blvd., Suite 205, Arlington, VA 22201.

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