Khalifa v. Shannon
Court of Appeals of Maryland
945 A.2d 1244 (Md. 2008)
Michael Shannon (Shannon) (plaintiff) and Nermeen Khalifa Shannon (Khalifa) (defendant) were married and had two children, Adam and Jason. Shannon and Khalifa divorced. The divorce decree granted Shannon custody of Adam and Khalifa custody of Jason. Each parent also had visitation rights of the other child. While both children were in Khalifa’s physical custody, Khalifa took the children to Egypt without telling Shannon. Khalifa had preplanned this act and had told Shannon that she was taking the children to New York and would return with them the following Sunday, when Shannon would have physical custody of both children. Khalifa kept the children in Egypt against Shannon's will. The children remained in Egypt when Shannon brought suit against Khalifa for tortious interference with his custody and visitation rights. Khalifa filed a motion to dismiss, arguing that interference with custody and visitation rights of children was not a cognizable claim. The trial court found in favor of Shannon and awarded him compensatory and punitive damages. Khalifa appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Battaglia, J.)
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