TN38: How to be prepared in case of divorce within an expat couple?

Divorce within an expat couple can lead to very complex legal situations. Worst case situations can lead to children abduction lawsuits.

Lucy Greenwood, lawyer & partner at International Family Law Group shares in this episode advice to prevent or manage these situations.

Lucy Greenwood handles cases concerning all aspects of family breakdown. She ensures that her clients are protected as much as possible from tough litigations. When possible, she tries to find a conciliatory approach. But much of her work in forum cases require immediate and urgent action to protect a client’s position. Lucy writes for websites, legal journals and she has presented a number of seminar and webinar updates for the legal profession, as well as given lectures across the world.

In this episode, Lucy gives us information and tips on many topics related to family breakdown and divorce. Here is a little glimpse on what we discussed:


  • What is the Hague Convention and how does it affect expat families.

An important convention to be aware of regarding child custody when there is a divorce among an international couple. Lucy explains the important aspects of it in this episode. Also, here are two links that might be very useful for you to check:

  1. The list of the countries who signed the Hague Convention:
  2. The NGO helping families in case of child abduction:


  • How to prepare and prevent difficult situations before you move, even if you have no issues in your relationship.


  • Where to file a divorce, what are the different aspects to take in consideration in terms of applicable jurisdictions?

In fact, this is a very complex topic as divorce proceedings can be applicable in a totally different country than your home or the place where you married.


  • What should a spouse do if she or he wants to leave the expat country with the child/children and avoid to fall into serious legal issues.


  • What should couples and parents who are not married be aware of. 


Here are the two important advice that our expert Lucy Greenwood advices:

  • Seek legal advice before you move abroad, even if your relationship is doing great. If your relationship stays strong, then great! If things get complicated, at least you will be prepared and know your rights.
  • If you seriously start thinking of divorce, do not mention divorce to your spouse until you have seen an attorney. You may discuss your relationship difficulties and how to solve them, but not the legal aspects. In this episode Lucy explains why it might cause you harm if you don’t speak to an attorney first.


 Find Lucy Greenwood:


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