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Scarlett Johansson and ex battle over custody of their daughter

Divorce can be a difficult life event for Minnesota residents. It can even be a messy process, impacting not only the spouses but also the children, if the divorcing couple has any. While dissolution is a challenging time for anyone, for celebrity couples, the added publicity and social media coverage of the process can make it extremely taxing. Even more so, reaching a resolution under the public eye can further complicate the matter, possibly adding issues or even lengthening the process.

Making it a public matter by filing for divorce in a New York court with their real names is only a gist of the complications faced by actress Scarlett Johansson and her estranged French Husband, Romain Dauriac. According to reports, the two are having a child custody battle over their 2-year-old daughter.

Following their split after only two years of marriage, they began the negotiating process behind closed doors. This recently was put to an end when Johansson made a surprised move and filed divorce papers in a New York court. Even more surprising, she didn't use anonymous captions or fake names, which is notoriously used by famous individuals in order to avoid attention in the tabloids.

While Johansson has made no comments and has demanded privacy, Dauriac made a statement that Scarlett has caused the matter to become public, asking that she withdraw her action and return to the negotiating table. So why did Johansson take this step? According to the Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Enforcement Act, the court that has jurisdiction over the matter is wherever the child has resided for the past six months.

Because the six-month mark has just hit, it is likely that Johansson took this step to ensure that the matter was settled in the U.S. versus France. If Dauriac decides to file in Paris, this could be considered a bi-national jurisdiction conflict, which would need to be resolved. The decision would be based on the six-month rule. Reports suggest that Dauriac wants to remain in New York so long as he and Johansson share equal physical custody.

Being involved in a complex custody dispute can be difficult on everyone involved. While it might be challenging to come to terms with a child custody agreement, it is possible to reach an amicable resolution. Those dealing with this or any other family law issue should take the time to understand his or her options and rights in the matter.

Source: USA Today, "Scarlett Johansson's custody battle: What happens next?, Maria Puente, March 9, 2017

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