top of page

What is the uniform child custody jurisdiction and enforcement act

The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (UCCJEA) is a uniform law that has been adopted by most U.S. states to address child custody jurisdiction and enforcement matters across state lines. The primary goals of the UCCJEA are to:

1. Determine Initial Child Custody Jurisdiction:

- The UCCJEA establishes rules for determining which state has jurisdiction to make initial child custody determinations when multiple states are involved.

- This helps prevent conflicting custody orders issued by different states and promotes a more efficient resolution of custody disputes.

2. Establish Continuing Exclusive Jurisdiction:

- Once a state has made a custody determination, the UCCJEA provides guidelines for that state to retain jurisdiction over the matter unless certain conditions are met.

- This helps ensure ongoing consistency in custody decisions and avoids forum shopping by parents seeking a more favorable outcome in another state.

3. Facilitate Interstate Enforcement of Custody Orders:

- The UCCJEA sets forth procedures for enforcing out-of-state custody orders, promoting cooperation between states in recognizing and enforcing each other's custody decrees.

- This helps streamline the process of enforcing custody orders across state lines and protects the interests of children and parents involved.

4. Promote Communication Between Courts:

- The UCCJEA encourages communication and cooperation between courts in different states to facilitate the resolution of custody disputes and protect the best interests of the child.

- Courts are encouraged to share relevant information and work together to ensure consistent and appropriate custody decisions by standardizing rules and procedures related to child custody jurisdiction and enforcement, the UCCJEA aims to promote efficiency, reduce conflicts, and protect the welfare of children in interstate custody cases. It provides a framework for resolving jurisdictional issues and enforcing custody orders across state boundaries.



bottom of page