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Bettering the Best Interests of the Child Determination: Of Checklists and Balancing Exercises

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)754-778
Number of pages25
JournalInternational Journal of Children’s Rights
Issue number3-4
Early online date17 Nov 2017
DateAccepted/In press - 10 Jul 2016
DateE-pub ahead of print - 17 Nov 2017
DatePublished (current) - Nov 2017


The paper compares European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) and UK court judgments on cross-border nationality cases concerning children and wholly domestic family law cases regarding children (without the cross-border element). It identifies different legal standards that apply to the well-being of children such as the best interests principle and the welfare principle and maps how successful these standards are in bringing in the views of children. It appears that cross-border nationality cases are unable to consider the interests of children as seriously as the wholly domestic family law cases. The domestic court approach of welfare brings in children’s views more effectively than nationality cases in domestic courts or at the ECtHR. It would benefit children if a rigorous best interests determination is carried out in nationality proceedings and a welfare approach is adopted consistent with family law cases.

    Research areas

  • nationality, best interests

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    Rights statement: This is the author accepted manuscript (AAM). The final published version (version of record) is available online via Brill Online at . Please refer to any applicable terms of use of the publisher.

    Accepted author manuscript, 510 KB, PDF document


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