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Case Name

M v. E [2015] HKCA 252

INCADAT reference

HC/E/CNh 1356





High Court of the Hong Kong Special Administration Region - Court of Appeal


Appellate Court


Hon Lam VP, Hon Cheung JA, and Barma JJA

States involved

Requesting State


Requested State




12 May 2015


Upheld on appeal


Rights of Custody - Art. 3 | Acquiescence - Art. 13(1)(a) | Grave Risk - Art. 13(1)(b)


Appeal dismissed, return ordered

HC article(s) Considered

3 5 12 13(1)(a) 13(1)(b) 15

HC article(s) Relied Upon

3 12 13(1)(a) 13(1)(b)

Other provisions

Brazilian Law 11,698 of June 13, 2008; Brazilian Law 13,058 of December 22, 2014; Brazilian 2004 Law; Brazilian 2002 Law; Brazil Act No. 3413 of 14/4/2000

Authorities | Cases referred to

In re E (Children) (Abduction: Custody Appeal) [2012] 1 AC 144 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 1068]; In re K [2014] AC 1401 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKn 1259]; In re S (A Child) [2012] 2 AC 257 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 1147]; Fothergill v Monarch Airlines Ltd [1978] AC 141; Re F (A Minor) (Abduction: Custody Rights Abroad) [1955] Fam 244; C. v C. (Abduction : Rights of Custody) [1989] 1 WLR 654 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 34]; Re V-B (Abduction: Rights of Custody) [1999] 2 FLR 192 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 261]; AC v. AS (unrep.) HCMP 4266/2001; Sirius International Insurance Co (Publ) v FAI General Insurance Ltd [2004] 1 WLR 3251; In Re B (A Minor) (Abduction) [1994] 2 FLR 249 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 4]; In re H. (Minors) (Abduction: Custody Rights) [1991] 2 AC 476 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 115]; In re H. and others (Minors) (Abduction : Acquiescence) [1998] AC 72 [INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 46]; In Re L [2004] 1 HKLRD 655; In re M (Abduction: Rights of Custody) [2008] 1 AC 1288 [ INCADAT reference HC/E/UKe 937].

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Synopsis available in EN | FR

2 children wrongfully removed (aged 5 and 8 at the time of the decision) – Nationals of Brazil and Argentina – Divorced parents – Father national of Argentina, Venezuela, and Brazil – Mother national of Argentina – By a homologated conciliation agreement of 5 June 2014, the father had custody for a period of four months and thereafter the parents were to have joint custody – Children lived in Brazil until July 2014 – Application for return filed with the Central Authority of Brazil in October 2014 – A decision or determination under Art. 15 of the 1980 Hague Child Abduction Convention was obtained - Application dismissed – Main issues: custody rights and acquiescence – “Rights of custody” has an autonomous meaning under the Convention, which crucially includes the right to determine the child’s place of residence – This right may be attributed to a parent by the law of the State in which the child was habitually resident immediately before the removal, as well as by the context, structure and content of an agreement on custody homologated in that State – “Acquiescence is a question of the actual subjective intention of the wronged parent, and not of the outside world’s perception of her intentions”

Deux enfants déplacés illicitement (âgés de 5 et 8 ans au moment de la décision) – Ressortissants du Brésil et de l’Argentine – Parents divorcés – Père ressortissant de l’Argentine, du Venezuela et du Brésil – Mère ressortissante argentine – En vertu d’un accord de conciliation homologué en date du 5 juin 2014, le père disposait de la garde exclusive pour une période de quatre mois, après quoi les parents devaient exercer le droit de garde conjointement – Enfants résidents au Brésil jusqu’en juillet 2014 – Demande de retour déposée auprès de l’Autorité centrale brésilienne en octobre 2014 – Obtention d’une décision ou attestation en vertu de l’art. 15 de la Convention Enlèvement d’enfants de 1980 – Demande rejetée – Principaux enjeux : droit de garde et acquiescement – Le terme « droit de garde » a une signification autonome dans le cadre de la Convention, qui comprend notamment le droit de déterminer la résidence habituelle de l’enfant – Ce droit est attribué à un parent en vertu du droit de l’État dans lequel l’enfant réside habituellement immédiatement après le déplacement et compte tenu du contexte, de la structure et du contenu d’un accord portant sur le droit de garde homologué dans cet État – « L’acquiescement dépend de l’intention subjective véritable du parent privé de l’enfant et non de la perception qu’en a le monde extérieur »


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