The Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction and Enforcement act (UCCJEA) may finally win approval in this year’s legislative session. The measure is part of the Omnibus Judicial Bill (HB 187) that was perfected by a voice vote in the House this week. The House must approve the bill by a recorded vote before it can be sent on to the Senate. Missouri is among only three states (Vermont and New Hampshire) that have yet to adopt the UCCJEA.

The UCCJEA repeals the current Uniform Child Custody Jurisdiction Act (UCCJA). The act specifies the procedures, priorities, and factors to be considered in initial custody jurisdiction determinations, continuing jurisdiction determinations, modification of custody determinations, and emergency orders. Also, family access orders may be filed relating to establishment or modification of custody or visitation including, but not limited to, dissolution, modification, third-party visitation, or paternity.