Legal defense in court in civil cases including: divorces, child support, the alimony obligations, adoptions, inheritance proceedings. Legalization of foreign divorces, search of divorce records in Russia, ex-USSR, United States. Registration, legalization of documents, apostilles. Restoration of certificates of marriage and divorce, of birth and death in Russia, the former USSR, USA, Europe, Australia, and other countries.
Questions: 372
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Family Law: adoption, guardianship (Russia)
I am an Indian engaged to a Russian lady in Moscow, Russia, who was recently denied a tourist visa to come to India because she did not have a notarized consent letter from her ex husband, allowing her daughter to travel. She is a divorcee for 10 years now, and her daughter is in sole custody with her. There is no contact with her ex husband and he is not supporting them in any way. Is this a valid reason? I read at that this is not so and also on the Indian embassy visa agency website that this letter is only required when the child is traveling without parents. We wish to get married next month and I also want to know whether the ex husband will or can create any hindrance to his daughter living in India with me and her mother, or traveling to and from India to Moscow. I would greatly appreciate a prompt reply.

Family Law: termination of parental rights, rights of the child, child support. (Russia)
I live in New york and have a girlfriend in Russia, she is 29. We have not met. It is my intent to travel to Russia soon. The ultimate goal is to possibly bring her to the US. She is a very sweet girl who's husband has left and has filed for divorce with the court date being in late May, she has a small child that is not quite three yet.

I have read some on your site and have a general understanding of Russian law. Her ex is telling her that he will ask for custody, I realize it will be hard for him to get it.

My questions and concerns are: Will custody be settled along with the divorce or will a separate petition have to be filed by her to start that process?

Also do you think the father will be awarded visitation at that time and if so how often would it typically be?

My concern being, how would she comply if he was to see the child every other weekend or something like that if she is in the US? It is not the intent to deprive the father from the child, just can’t go to Russia every other week.

Also I have read on your site that the mother shouldn’t have any problem bringing the child to the US as long as the father doesn’t write a formal protest to the authorities. Will he be notified that she is attempting to remove the child from the country? if he does protest and she has custody will that prevent her leaving the country or will it just be that a visitation schedule would have to be worked out?

Also are you interested in helping in the visa process for her? I think she needs legal representation through the divorce/custody process, wouldn’t you agree? If so can you or do you have someone in that area to represent her?

Family Law: termination of parental rights, rights of the child, child support. (Russia)
We would like to be informed about the general questions as

1. Which court has a
jurisdiction over the case of requesting a return of
a child under the Hague Convention?

2. What is the general proceedings of the court procedure of a child
return like in Russia? Especially, please let us know the time period
between the filing and a court order, which is recommended to be six weeks
under the Hague Convention.

3. If a request for return of a child is filed, what kind of defense is
available for the defendants (Taking Parents) under the implementation law
of the Hague Convention of Russia?

4. What kind of documents are necessary to initiate the court procedure
under the Hague Convention in Russia? Especially, are the original
documents required? Do you need the translation of the documents into

We would appreciate your comments to the above points.

Family Law: termination of parental rights, rights of the child, child support. (Russia)
I have contacted you in the past with regards to visit my child in Russia however since then my wife came to live with me in U.S. as I managed to get them both back in U.S. I made an American Passport for my daughter.

Due to the work, I went back to England in search of work I then discovered my wife had left my parents home and took my child out of my country back to Russia I am totally devastated and a loss as what to do I did everything within my power and so did my family to make a happy and secure family but this was never enough I have been threatened today on the phone by a man with her sister if i didn't make what her sister wanted I will be harmed this has mad me extremely worried in case i go to visit my child in case some harm will come to me all i need to do is visit my child in peace and be allowed my right as her father to have regular contact either by phone or webcam in between visits I think there maybe a problem with the mother as she is very controlling and in the past has only been interested in me sending money and what i have sent is never enough i would appreciate your advise and how you could help me in this matter.

Family Law: divorce proceedings, conclusion of marriage (Russia)
I live in USA and I would like to know if you can help me with getting an annulment of marriage. My wife is a Russian citizen and has been living in New York for 9 months. She has returned to Russia last week and is now living at her mothers apartment. We were married in St. Petersburg in September of 2009 then she arrived here in May of 2011. She has two children from a previous marriage, she was registered last living with her mother in St. Petersburg. I met her on internet and then i came to St. Petersburg and stayed 3 weeks, at that point in my life i had just went through suffering a death of a very close family member, my finance was very comforting to me and i explained to her while there that i wanted some time but she told me that she could not continue our relationship and we needed to be married. I went ahead while there and we were married, we went on talking online and i felt maybe i was just not thinking right about the situation and that everything would work out. After the last nine months she has told me that she wanted a divorce and that she wanted to go back to Russia , then before leaving she said that she really did not want to leave. The relationship has been very disappointing for both of us . We do not have any property together and or children, can this marriage be annulled or would a divorce be the only way and can you help in this matter?

Family Law: adoption, guardianship (Ukraine)
We have adopted three children from Ukraine that want to return to their grandparents. We are in agreement with this. The parents lost custodial rights due to drinking. We have made contact with the grandparents who have been trying to find the children since we adopted them four years ago. How would we do this? Would we set up the grandparents as custodians or guardians? Is there another way to do this?

I have decided to try reconnecting with the paternal grandparents, who are in their mid 50's, to approach them about letting the kids live with them in Ukraine. The maternal grandmother died when the mom was 14 and the maternal grandfather never visited them in the orphanage and lived too far away. The paternal grandparents live just in Ukraine, where the kids were born.

Our adopted kids are biological siblings and have told us non-stop they miss the paternal grandparents and want to go back to Ukraine. They have even told us over and over they would run away so they could get to Ukraine, or "go to jail", so the jail would send them back to Ukraine. They obviously miss Ukraine a huge amount since being adopted 4 years ago.

Also I have found I have worsening health (Lupus) and very poor eye sight (I have had 17 eye surgeries now) and I really want these kids to be happy and safe. My health is so bad I cannot easily care for them and I cannot see. My husband works very late each day so they will need someone.

The grandparents told a translator a few weeks ago (when we asked him to find them) that these children were their ONLY grand kids and they missed them very much. I did not get to ask them about transferring guardianship or letting them "adopt" the kids, because the translator was only talking to them without me present (after I wrote letters). The translator was upset we did not want to just "visit", but to instead try letting the kids stay in Ukraine. He said it would never work out to try to give the grandparents guardianship and the kids had to wait till each reached 18 to reconnect with their family. Is this true or can we give guardianship to the grandparents?

Please let me know if you can help us. Our adopted kids are healthy and happy, but miss family in Ukraine a lot. It was very helpful to receive pictures of family a few weeks ago from Ukraine, but it has only made them more homesick for their biological family.

Let me know if we can do something to return children to Ukraine. They repeatedly said 4 years ago they did not want to be adopted and taken away from their family in Ukraine, but we did not know Russian and did not understand what they were saying. John of course was too young to talk, but he would rather die than be split off from his brother and sister.

Please let me know if you can help us.

Family law : divorce and division of property. (Russia)
Hi, I am Icelander living in Norway. I am married to woman from Kharkov. Now we have a problems because mistake and misunderstandings, we have never lived together. After she was home again everything was going wrong for us and now she want divorce.

I think I must go to Ukraine and try to talk with my "still wife" eyes to eyes, but we have not talk together over one year, only few words with email. She told me she want divorce because she felt I did not want her. Something in my words or behaviour was misunderstand by her. It.s lot of things who is different between the west people and the east and can be misinterpreted and badly misleading and can make wrong conclusions and then conflicts. That has happen in our case but I am helpless, I only want she can be happy and I hope so. She did not answer my phone-calls. We have not lived together, only few weeks under same roof, so this seems to be simply. Most simply in such case is invalidate the marriage due to adultery, she told me in email, she want start new life with man in her homeland.

I am ready to pay you for help in this case, if you want further details so you can evaluate based on feminine intuition eastern European woman what best to do, or go direct to annul the marriage if it is really her wish is in your hands if the price is acceptable.

with great thanks,

Family Law: termination of parental rights, rights of the child, child support. (Russia)
My goal is to get the divorce as soon as possible.

The custody issue will be addressed
in the US, it can not be avoided.

If we included custody in St. Petersburg, Olga will simply delay and delay the process.

In the event Olga would return to Russia, that I would have zero recourse and
ability to see my daughter.

That said, I would be sure to report her to the FBI for child abduction if she ever tries to take my daughter out of the US.

This is the only compelling reason to even consider some custody order in St. Petersburg.

So, after the divorce is separated from the custody, we may want to address custody in Russia, to protect my parental rights in the event she does return.

Family Law: termination of parental rights, rights of the child, child support. (Ukraine)
The theory:
You may remember the case? I had an extra marital affair with a Ukrainian woman
– Olga. The result was twins, 7 years ago. Under Ua law, the twins are entitled to child support = 1/3 of the father’s salary (not sure if this is gross or net) – to 18, or to age 23 for university students. The children have birth certificates registered under my name in Ukraine. Under English law the percentage of child support is C20%, based on normal domestic settlements. Of course, the norm in Uk salary terms would mean a higher settlement than under normal Ua salary terms.

The reality:
I was born in 1950. I live with my wife and support a daughter. I have been paying Olga 1000 Euros pm which is around 23% of my salary depending on exchange rate. She has a job, and earns about E675 at current X rate. I want to support the kids – for me it’s a moral obligation – but I want an agreement within reasonable limits. I also want unrestricted access to the children, ie without the mother’s presence. We have started a conversation aimed at finding an agreement to give Olga’s children security.

My issues are:
1. Overall the agreement needs to be workable – my salary is in the UK, the children in Ukraine. I don’t want to sign an agreement which is subject to Ukrainian legal requirements.
2. I need an agreement which is reasonable – if I am sick, made unemployed, or die, the agreement needs a termination or pause clause.
3. I retire at 65 subject to changes in law. I can’t guarantee payments of this level after that point.

The agreement so far (English version) looks as attached.

I would like your advice on
1. Whether you feel I should go ahead on this basis, what are the legal risks in your view?
2. Whether an agreement should be signed at all, and then under English or Ukrainian law? Is there an alternative?
3. What kind of clause should be introduced to cover uncertainty (unemployment, sickness, death, force majeure)?
4. What is likely to happen in the case that I die, while the children are under 18? Can they claim under English law against my estate?

Could you let me know how much this would cost and how to make payment to you?

Family Law: divorce proceedings, conclusion of marriage (Russia)
Both my wife, our child, and I reside in the US.
My wife and child are Russian
citizens, registered in St. Petersburg.
They have resided in the US now for almost 1 year.
I filed for divorce in St. Petersburg in March of this year.

She recently decided to include the child custody in the Russian divorce
and also file for divorce here in WI USA.

So now the divorce in St. Petersburg has went to the district court because of
the custody issue.

Does Russia have jurisdiction over my daughter who has both US and Russian passports?

It seems to me because my daughter resides in the US for more than 6 months, that the Russian court will not have jurisdiction over her. Is this correct?

Can we separate these issues and conclude the divorce in St. Petersburg?

Also, because I filed first, do you know if the divorce proceedings in
the US can be continued with the pending Russian divorce?

My goal is to complete the divorce in St. Petersburg as soon as possible.

Questions: 372
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