Legal Aspects of Child Custody in Divorce for Foreigners in the Czech Republic
Divorce and custody disputes can be complicated, especially for foreigners living in the Czech Republic. In this article, we will explore the legal aspects of child custody after divorce or separation between two foreigners or a foreigner and a Czech citizen in the Czech Republic.
When Will Czech Courts Decide and When Will Foreign Courts Decide?
In general, Czech courts will make decisions regarding custody if the child has habitual residence in the Czech Republic. Habitual residence refers to the place where the child is integrated into family and social life, which is different from permanent residence, which is purely administrative.
In exceptional cases, the Czech court may have jurisdiction if the following conditions are met:
- The child has a special connection to the Czech Republic (e.g. the child is a Czech citizen, has had habitual residence in the Czech Republic in the past, or one of the parents has habitual residence in the Czech Republic).
- The foreign court believes that the Czech court is better able to assess the best interests of the child.
- The Czech court agrees to take the case.
Czech courts may also have jurisdiction if the parents agree in writing or during the proceedings to allow the Czech court to decide on custody, and if the following conditions are met:
- The child has a strong connection to the Czech Republic (e.g. the child is a Czech citizen, has had habitual residence in the Czech Republic in the past, or one of the parents has habitual residence in the Czech Republic).
- It is in the best interests of the child.
When Will Czech Law Be Applied and When Will Foreign Law Be Applied?
Czech law will apply to custody issues if the child has habitual residence in the Czech Republic, unless it is an exceptional case (e.g. due to refugee status), in which case the law of the country where the child resides will apply.
Who Will Have Custody of the Children After the Divorce/Separation?
Czech courts typically award custody in one of the following forms:
- Sole custody (the child is entrusted to the care of only one parent, but this does not mean that the other parent has no influence on the child’s overall upbringing).
- Joint custody (the child is entrusted to the care of both parents).
If the parents cannot agree on custody, the court will decide based on the best interests of the child, taking into account all relevant factors, including the child’s relationship with each parent, the child’s age, and the child’s wishes (if the child is old enough to express them).
Choosing a Specialized Divorce Lawyer
Given the complexity of these issues, it is important to choose a specialized divorce lawyer who can help navigate the legal system in the Czech Republic. Mgr. Jan Kubica is an experienced divorce lawyer based in Prague who speaks English and can assist with child custody issues. Contact him at Telephone: 00420 730 570 578, E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org, Address: Vinohradska 22, 120 00 Praha 2, web: ak-kubica.cz. Choose a lawyer who can help protect your rights and the best interests of your child.