Argued and Submitted, San Francisco, California:
August 13, 2014.
[Copyrighted Material Omitted]
Appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. D.C. No. 3:13-cv-04069-JST. Jon S. Tigar, District Judge, Presiding.
Thomas W. Wolfrum (argued), Walnut Creek, California; Jeremy D. Morley, New York, New York, for Plaintiff-Appellant.
William M. Sloan (argued), Mill Valley, California, In Pro Per.
Before: KOZINSKI, Chief Judge, and McKEOWN and CLIFTON, Circuit Judges.
McKEOWN, Circuit Judge.
In this case we consider the significance of a " trial period" of residence on a child's " habitual residence" under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction. Elaine Murphy seeks the return of her child, E.S., to Ireland. We affirm the judgment of the district court that E.S. was a habitual resident of the United States, where she presently resides with her father, William Sloan.
Sloan, a citizen of the United States, and Murphy, a citizen of Ireland, were married in California in 2000. They lived together
in Mill Valley, in California, and had a daughter, E.S., in 2005. In October 2009, Sloan told Murphy that he felt their marriage was at an end, and moved to a different bedroom in their house.
In January 2010, Murphy and Sloan enrolled E.S. in a private California preschool for the next fall. But these plans changed in the spring of 2010, after Murphy proposed moving to Ireland so that she could get a master's degree in fine arts from University College Cork and so that E.S. " could experience going to school" there. Murphy and Sloan discussed the move to Ireland as a " trial period," and Sloan wrote to both the private preschool and the public school district to inform them of E.S.'s move and the temporary nature of the plan. (" This was very last minute, but we decided to try living in Ireland for a year[.]" ).
In early 2010, Sloan had purchased a second home in Mill Valley so that E.S. could live easily with both parents. Sloan and Murphy agreed to store Murphy's belongings there during Murphy's time in Ireland, and to rent, rather than sell, this home during her absence so that she would have a place to live when she returned. Murphy moved with E.S. to Ireland in August, and Sloan paid the rent ...