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Snow v. Snow

Oregon Court of Appeals
74 P.3d 1137 (2003)


Facts

Mr. and Ms. Snow (defendants) are the parents of nine-year-old S. The couple divorced in North Dakota in 1995, and Mr. Snow was granted custody of S, while Ms. Snow was granted visitation rights. Mr. Snow then moved to Oregon, leaving S with his paternal grandmother (Grandmother) (plaintiff) in North Dakota. In 1997, Grandmother and S moved to Oregon to join Mr. Snow. Grandmother was the primary caretaker of S from 1995 to 2001. In June 2001, Grandmother moved S to England with a relative after suspecting Mr. Snow of abusing S. In July 2001, Grandmother petitioned for full custody of S in Oregon, but acknowledged the original North Dakota custody order and recognized that Ms. Snow remained a North Dakota resident. Grandmother argued that Oregon had jurisdiction, because she, S, and Mr. Snow had lived there for four years, and S had spent his formative years there. Mr. Snow argued that Oregon did not have jurisdiction, because North Dakota was the site of the original custody decision, and Ms. Snow continued to live in North Dakota. The trial court ruled that North Dakota had continuing jurisdiction, and Oregon did not have jurisdiction under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA). Grandmother appealed.

Rule of Law

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Issue

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Holding and Reasoning (Haselton, J.)

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  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

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