The Uniform Child-Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement Act (1997) says which states’ courts have and should exercise jurisdiction.
A court must have jurisdiction (i.e., the power and authority to hear and decide a
matter) before it can proceed to consider the merits of a custody case.
The UCCJA bases jurisdiction vested the court, upon a child’s affiliation with a State.
Specifically, it established four jurisdictional grounds:
- Home State (reserved for the State in
which the child has lived for at least 6
months preceding commencement of
- Significant connection (exists when a
State has substantial evidence about a
child as a result of the child’s significant
connections to that State).
- Emergency (governs situations such as
abandonment or abuse that require
immediate protective action).
- Vacuum (applies when no other jurisdictional
I hope this helps.