From 18 to 21 September 2018, the Working Group on the draft Guide to Good Practice on Article 13(1)(b) met at the offices of the Permanent Bureau in the Hague. The meeting was attended by 30 experts and members of the Permanent Bureau under the Chairmanship of the Honourable Mrs Diana Bryant, AO, QC, former Chief Justice of the Family Court of Australia. The experts represented 16 States from both civil and common law jurisdictions.
The mandate of the Working Group is to develop a Guide to Good Practice on the interpretation and application of Article 13(1)(b) of the Hague Convention of 25 October 1980 on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the “1980 Child Abduction Convention”), with a component to provide guidance specifically directed to judicial authorities. Article 13(1)(b) of the 1980 Child Abduction Convention provides for the so-called “grave risk exception” to the return of a child who has been wrongfully removed or retained. The objective of the Guide is to promote the consistent interpretation and application of this provision in accordance with the objectives of the 1980 Child Abduction Convention. A previous draft of the Guide to Good Practice had been discussed at the Seventh Meeting of the Special Commission on the Practical Operation of the 1980 Child Abduction Convention and the 1996 Child Protection Convention which took place in October 2017. At this September meeting, the members of the Working Group discussed a revised draft of the Guide which will be circulated before the end of the year for comments to the Members of the Organisation with a view to its finalisation and approval by the Council on General Affairs and Policy in March 2019.