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Hamburg Higher Regional Court: no longer responsible

Photo: Hanno Bode / IMAGO

According to a decision by the Hanseatic Higher Regional Court, German courts no longer have jurisdiction over the custody dispute between Hamburg entrepreneur Christina Block and her ex-husband. The court announced on Tuesday that the reason is that the children now have their permanent center of life in Denmark.

With its decision on Monday, the Family Senate confirmed a corresponding first instance decision of the family court, against which the mother had lodged a complaint. In a decision dated October 17, 2023, the family court rejected both parents' applications for custody as inadmissible because the German courts no longer had international jurisdiction during the course of the proceedings.

The case recently caused a stir when the children were brought from Denmark to Germany on New Year's Eve by previously unknown persons. A Danish family court gave the father sole custody at the beginning of January, although the decision is not yet final. The reason given at the time was that it could be assumed that the children had settled in in Denmark. The events of New Year's Eve also played a significant role.

Christina Block and the father of her children married in August 2005 and divorced about ten years later. With the decision of the Hanseatic Higher Regional Court, Christina Block's legal recourse in Germany has been exhausted. Her only option is to file a constitutional complaint if she believes her fundamental rights have been violated.