Father reunited with son after international custody battle

After 15 months of trying to get his son back from his estranged wife, a Montana man is being recognized as the first person ever to get his child back from the Bahamas using the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction.

But for the 30-year-old father, all he hopes is that other parents don’t have to go through what he did in order to get back his child custody rights.

According to sources, the Montana man’s story dates back to the summer of 2008 when he and his wife went to the Bahamas to visit his in-laws. When it was time to come back home, he came alone, with the agreement that his wife and son would be coming back to the U.S. later. Problem is, his wife never came back, never returned the couple’s child and stopped all communication with him.

Shortly after, the father started working through the legal process to get his son back, with the U.S. Department of State and the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children also taking up his case.

In May an article was published in the Flathead Beacon that talked about the Montana man’s struggle. At that time, it was reported the father already had custody of the child.

In October, after more than a year of waiting, the man’s now almost 2-year-old son is back at home, without his mother. “I always knew I’d get him back, I just didn’t know when. It’s the end of a nightmare,” the dad said about the whole ordeal.

According to a recent news article, his estranged wife has made no attempt to contact them, but in the future, he would be willing to share custody of the couple’s child, as long as it was in Kalispell, Montana where he lives.

Source: The Spokesman Review, “Montana father wins international custody fight,” Myers Reece, 14 Nov 2010

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