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Mozes v. Mozes

United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
239 F.3d 1067 (9th Cir. 2001)


Israeli citizens Arnon Mozes (plaintiff) and Michal Mozes (defendant) were a married couple with four children ranging in age from seven to 16 years old. With Arnon’s consent, Michal and the children moved to Los Angeles, California, to take advantage of the education system, learn to speak English, and profit from American culture. Arnon remained in Israel but visited Michal and the children frequently. Although the Mozeses agreed that the stay in California would be for at least 15 months, Arnon filed a petition in California after one year against Michal for divorce and custody of the children. The trial court granted temporary custody of the children to Michal and entered a temporary restraining order prohibiting Arnon from removing the children from California. Arnon then filed a petition in federal district court, seeking removal of the children to Israel pursuant to the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction (the Convention). Subsequently, the oldest child elected to voluntarily return to Israel with the consent of both parents. The district court denied Arnon’s petition with respect to the remaining three children, concluding that the children were habitual residents of the United States. Arnon appealed.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Kozinski, J.)

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