Kelly Rutherford Loses Appeal in International Child Custody Battle

Former “Gossip Girl” actress Kelly Rutherford lost a bid to have her children returned from France.

Rutherford appealed a New York state court’s ruling granting custody to ex-husband and German businessman Daniel Giersch and allowing him to live with the children in Monaco. Rutherford and Giersch were married in August 2006 and Rutherford filed for divorce in December 2008. The couple have two children together: Hermés (age 9) and Helena (6).

In April 2012, Giersch’s visa was revoked after being investigated for fraud and tax evasion. A New York court awarded child custody to Giersch since he was unable to visit the children in the United States. In August 2015, Rutherford refused to return the children to Monaco and was subsequently ordered by Justice Ellen Gesmer of the New York County Supreme Court in Manhattan to return the children immediately.

Rutherford filed an application to appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. The Second Circuit denied her application on December 17th and a Monaco court issued a ruling on December 15th forbidding Rutherford from having the children visit her in the United States. The Monaco court ruled that Rutherford can “exercise her visiting and accommodation rights exclusively in France and Monaco” and affirmed that “parental authority is [to be] exercised jointly” by the parents.

Rutherford filed for bankruptcy in 2013 and says that she has spent $1.5 million on attorney’s fees in her divorce and child custody proceedings.

Source:, “Kelly Rutherford’s appeal to win back child custody denied,” Frank Lovece, December 18, 2015