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Rule 30: Registration of a Foreign Parenting Decree or Order for Enforcement and/or Modification under the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA), R.C. 3127.01-3127.53



I.  REGISTRATION (R.C. 3127.35)

(A) WHEN APPLICABLE.
    
(1)     A foreign (out-of-state) decree of divorce, dissolution, legal separation or annulment, or order that allocates or awards legal custody, physical custody, parenting time, companionship or visitation may be registered with this Court for the purpose of enforcing or modifying its child custody determination.

    (2)     The registration of a foreign decree or court order does not vest this Court with jurisdiction to enforce or modify its child support, spousal support, property division provisions or other monetary obligations.  
See Rule 31 as to registration, enforcement and modification of a foreign support order.

(B) REGISTRATION PROCEDURE. 
    
(1)  A person seeking to register a foreign decree or order for enforcement or modification under the UCCJEA must file with the Clerk of Courts a
Petition to Register Foreign Parenting Order with Notice requesting registration for enforcement or modification.  The Petition must be served upon the opposing party or parties according to methods of service in Civ.R. 4 through 4.6.  

    (2)  Two copies of the foreign decree or order and any modifications of the order, including one certified copy, must be attached to the Petition. A certified translation to English of the foreign decree or order if issued in a language other than English, with all content from the original must be attached to the Petition.

    (3)  The Petition will receive a Cuyahoga County Domestic Relations Court case number as an original action.

    (4)  The Petition must include:   

        (a)  A sworn affidavit stating under penalty of perjury, to the best of the knowledge and belief of the person seeking registration, that the foreign decree or order has not been modified.

        (b)  The name and address of the person seeking registration, and the name and address of any parent and any person who has been allocated or awarded legal custody, physical custody, parenting time, companionship or visitation time with the child(ren) by the foreign decree or order, in the caption of the Petition.

        (c)  A conspicuous Notice to the non-registering party or parties that states: 

             (i) That the registered child custody determination is enforceable as of the date of the registration in the same manner as a child custody determination issued by a court of this state. 

            (ii) That a hearing to contest the validity of the registered determination must be requested within 30 days after service of Notice.

            (iii) That failure to contest the registration shall result in confirmation of the child custody determination and preclude further contest of that determination with respect to any matter that could have been asserted. 

    (5)  If the non-registering party or parties fail to timely request a hearing to contest registration, the registered decree or order shall be confirmed by operation of law.  An 
Order Confirming Registration of Foreign Parenting Order shall be attached to the Petition for the Court’s use.  The Court will decline to confirm the registration if all of the requirements in section (B) of this rule are not met.

(C)  CONTESTING REGISTRATION.  
    (1)  A party seeking to contest the validity of the registered decree or order shall file and serve upon the Petitioner a
Request for Hearing to Contest Registration of Foreign Parenting Order, within 30 days after service of Notice.  

    (2)  If a timely Request is filed, a hearing will be scheduled to determine whether the registered decree or order will be confirmed.  

    (3)  The registered decree or order will be confirmed unless the party contesting registration establishes one of the following: 

        (a) The issuing court did not have jurisdiction.

        (b) The child custody determination sought to be registered has been vacated, stayed, or modified by a court having jurisdiction to do so. 

        (c) The person contesting registration was entitled to notice of the child custody proceeding for which registration is sought, but notice was not given.

(D)  CONFIRMATION OF REGISTRATION.
    (1)    The filing of the Petition and required documents constitutes registration of the foreign parenting decree or order.  

    (2)    The registration of a foreign parenting decree or order does not confer jurisdiction to enforce or modify the order.

    (3)    A registered decree or order confirmed by operation of law or after notice and hearing is enforceable in the same manner as an order of this Court. 

    (4)    Confirmation of a registered parenting decree or order by operation of law or after notice and hearing precludes further contest of the determination with respect to any matter that could have been asserted at the time of registration.

II. ENFORCEMENT AND/OR MODIFICATION OF A FOREIGN PARENTING ORDER

(A)  ASSUMPTION OF JURISDICTION.
    
(1)  Before issuing any modification or enforcement orders, the Court will determine that it has jurisdiction to proceed.  

        (a)    The Court will not exercise jurisdiction if, at the time the motion is filed, a parenting proceeding is pending in another state exercising jurisdiction, unless: (1) the court in the other state has declined to exercise jurisdiction because this Court is the more convenient forum, or (2) this Court exercises temporary emergency jurisdiction.

         (b)   Specific affirmative relief will not be granted unless the registered decree or order has been confirmed.

(B)    A Motion to Enforce and/or a Motion to Modify a Foreign Parenting Order may be filed at the same time the Petition to Register Foreign Parenting Order is filed, or at a later time.  The motion must be separate from the Petition.

    (1)  The motion must be served upon the responding party or parties according to methods of service in Civ. R. 4 through 4.6.

    (2)  A Parenting Proceeding Affidavit must be filed at the same time the motion is filed.

    (3)  The motion must be supported by a sworn affidavit that sets forth the specific operative facts that constitute the alleged non-compliance or change of circumstances.  The content of the motion must comply with Local Rules 19 and 20, as applicable.

    (4)  A Motion to Enforce a Foreign Parenting Order must state:

        (a)    Whether the court that issued the child custody determination identified the jurisdictional basis it relied upon in exercising jurisdiction and, if so, what the basis was.

         (b)   Whether the determination for which enforcement is sought has been vacated, stayed, or modified by a court whose decision must be enforced under R.C. Chapter 3127 and, if so, identify the court, the case number, and the nature of the proceeding.

         (c)    Whether any proceeding has been commenced that could affect the current proceeding, including proceedings for enforcement of child custody determinations; proceedings relating to domestic violence or protection orders; proceedings to adjudicate the child as an abused, neglected, or dependent child; proceedings seeking termination of parental rights, and adoptions; and, if so, the court, the case number, and the nature of the proceeding.

        (d)   The present physical address of the child and the respondent, if known.

        (e)    Whether relief in addition to the immediate physical custody of the child and attorney’s fees is sought, including a request for assistance from law enforcement officials and, if so, the relief sought.

        (f)    Whether the child custody determination has been registered and confirmed and the date and place of registration.

    (5)  A hearing will be scheduled on the motion.

    (6)  A Motion to Modify a Foreign Parenting Order must state the reasons this Court should assume jurisdiction under R.C. Chapter 3127.  The moving party must be prepared to demonstrate these reasons at the first scheduled hearing.

(Effective July 1, 1991.  Amended effective July 17, 2006; July 29, 2013.)

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